It would have been very easy to sit back after the fiasco of the Father Mbaka video (where he practically laid a curse on PDP Presidential candidate, Abubakar Atiku and his running mate, Peter Obi), and begin to cast aspersions on Christianity and, maybe, Catholicism.
The strongest adherents of the faith make it so easy for sceptics to deliver crushing blows on them, week after week.
Do we talk about the ones who assure you that the Lord watches over you and therefore, you do not need to be afraid but turn around to the very humane Commissioner of Police to request for armed police guards?
Should we talk about the ones who encourage you to fast and pray in order to have a ‘breakthrough’ but look like they have never abstained from ordinary water for as much as three hours?
How about those preaching about frugality and simplicity and reminding you how ‘God loves a cheerful giver, give Him ALL you’ve got,’ and after you have done just that, they take part of what you gave and use same to send their children to the best schools or build palatial mansions here on earth?
Not done, they still use the remaining part to maintain their expensive mistresses and take vacations to the best spots on earth.
And when we talk, even those of us who are Bible thumpers in our own rights, are told to keep quiet, after all, they did not force anyone to part with his/her money.
No, they may not have forced us to give but they invariably end up somewhere around us trying to beg and coerce us into parting with the money we refused to ‘invest’ in the gods of men who claim to be acting as proxies for God.
We, who are condemned for being non-tithers, are still the easy targets when the belt refuses to meet around the middle.
Father Mbaka’s video and his utterances, as far as I am concerned, were meant to finagle cash out of Atiku and Obi, promising them electoral victory on the one hand, while also threatening them with electoral loss; a very strong argument for asking the church to stay away from partisan politics.
For instance, when Father Mbaka had ‘Alhaji Gandollars’, I mean the Executive Governor of Kano State, the MD/CEO of Babanriga Bank Plc and the Tzar of scattering corruption dollars in Nigeria standing before him on the pulpit, he went gaga:
“How I wish you were here when I was speaking to Peter Obi representing Atiku. I know that Obi went out from here almost disgraced.
All the people Buhari is giving allocation, what qualification do they have that we don’t have? Who among them has done for him what we are doing for him? It is because of this Buhari that we told Peter Obi all those rubbish he heard today.
And I want to tell you this; if Buhari will remain ungrateful to this ministry, he is going nowhere. Atiku is waiting for him somewhere, and the only thing that can stop Atiku is spiritual; so you people should go and come back; you should not take us for granted, I am speaking with a spiritual mandate…”
What ‘rubbish’ was he referring to?
Well, shortly before Ganduje came on stage, Father Mbaka had spent ten minutes trying to convince Peter Obi who is famed for his reluctance to part with a half-broken farthing, to make a ‘robust’ donation to his ministry.
The more he tried to pin Obi to a spot and get him to commit himself financially, the more Obi displayed some ‘Maradonic’ skills to wriggle out of his grasp.
Out of desperation, Father Mbaka had declared:
“It means you don’t want to do anything for the Lord. What you just said now is a political statement. God hates stinginess and I’m telling you this to save your life. With the way you are going, you and Atiku will fail. The way you and Atiku are moving will end in shame.”
Let us look beyond the disgrace in Father Mbaka lining up politicians, leading each of them up to the slaughter and blackmailing them into parting with money for his ministry and ask ourselves; how would these mercenary-minded men of God act as the conscience of the politicians if they are this knee-deep into money politics?
We know that election season in Nigeria is a silly season and money is about to start flying carelessly around the Nigerian airspace as politicians get ready to spray money at the electorate in the hope of convincing them to release their votes.
But how and why should a priest be so blatantly and shamelessly brazen? Selling prophecies by the deadline of 31st December for cash donations?
It is sad.
We did see a lot of this during the Anambra State elections, so it’s like it is nothing new. We saw priests on both sides of the divide (Anglican/Catholic) pitching candidates against each other in the desperate scramble for their own share of whatever the politicians had in their deep pockets.
The congregation was in on the scam and the choirs were primed to sing the same songs for the candidates, just change the names.
You would hear:
“Obiano na I di anyi mma, mbombo. Onye chi mere eze na mmadu apughi I na ya, mbombo”.
As soon as Obiano launches the book and leaves, the choir will break into another song:
“Chidoka na I di anyi mma, mbombo. Onye chi mere eze na mmadu apughi I na ya, mbombo”.
Chidoka would launch his own and just as he turns to leave:
“Oseloka na I di anyi mma, mbombo…”.
They don’t even have the fear of thunder (since they apparently don’t have an iota of fear for God) striking them down as they are singing from both sides of their mouths – singing for their suppers.
What Father Mbaka did was despicable but we have monetized almost every aspect of politics in this country that the people are becoming more and more brazen about it.
They see this season as the season to grab their own share of the national cake, and even the church is diving into it headlong.
Father Mbaka was quite brazen in the trending videos, but don’t be deceived into thinking he is like the black sheep of the flock.
He is not.
It is cancerous and it is slowly spreading. It has eaten up almost all the internal organs before bursting out to the surface in the form of Father Mbaka; threatening, cajoling and blackmailing candidates into oiling his already greasy palms, in exchange for a life-changing prophecy.
God help Nigeria!