By Patrick Obia
Members of Methodist Church Nigeria, Wesley Cathedral, Calabar Diocese on Sunday staged a peaceful protest.
The protesters pointed dictatorship, irregularities and demand Archbishop Emmanuel Udofia and Rev. Ebong out.
The protest staged in and outside the church premises, 39 Beecroft, Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State while service was ongoing saw members mostly youths on black attires with placards with different inscriptions.
Some inscriptions on the placards are “we need man of God, not a Herdsman”, “Rev. Ebong stop incessant harassment of members”, “Archbishop Udofia has killed our church”, “Udofia, it is time to disembark”, “let us elect our leaders, stop impositions”, amongst others.
The youth leader, Adim Ekpenyong Jnr, who led the protest said the youths and every other member of the Church are not happy with the way things are going under the leadership of Archbishop Emmanuel Udofia, ranging from funds misappropriation, raining of abuses and curses as well as fueling disunity and bitterness amongst members.
“We have an administration we are not comfortable with. They are riding on us, on our rights. We have Ministers who are working against the Constitution, Ministers who have imposed members on us as leaders; we have Ministers who have abused us on the pulpit instead of preaching the word; we have Ministers who have called the Efik sons bastards, that our fathers were soldiers and they came and in pregnanted our moms and ran away.
“It is high time we bring this to a stop and all we are asking as you can see, there is no arms, no machetes, no guns, not even a stick and we are not saying a word to anybody, all we need is for these two duos to leave our Presbytery since they have decided to be so insolent and have been so disrespectful to the Church Constitution.
“It is really affecting the young people, few days ago, because of them had issues with members, they arrested two youths, one was detained from 8am to 4pm in Zone 6. Our Presbyter was called. Since Wednesday, Thursday and up till this second (Sunday) he hasn’t said anything or visited the people involved. It is high time we bring this to a stop. We are not happy at all, we want the Presbyter to come down, we don’t want the two of them in our Church anymore.” He said.
He went on to say that, “want to enjoy our service. He has insulted the knights, insulted our parents; we have so many evidences against him.
“We have written to the prelate and this thing has been there since last year. We had our Stewart removed in a wrong way, suspended and disgraced on the altar and she stayed away for nine months. He imposed members on us and say it’s from the Holy Spirit without following due process. Methodist is very methodical Church, we follow due process and we have methods we do things; we nominate and elect our leaders.” He queried.
After hours of waiting for the Archbishop to address the protesting members, the Presbyter pleaded with them to remain calm till Wednesday for them to be addressed but the protesters paid deaf ears, disrupted the service and insisted the Archbishop Emmanuel Udofia address.
See pictures below.
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