Demolition: Anambra community bans Anglican Church from disputed school premises

Posted by Pamela Eboh, Awka | 21 September 2014 | 3,441 times

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Nkwelle Ezunaka Community in Oyi Local Government Area of Anambra State has banned the Anglican Church from either rebuilding its recently demolished house located in Oyolu Oze Primary School or putting up a new structure in the premises.

The ban was announced by the President General of Nkwelle Ezunaka community development association, Dr. Chris Eluemunoh, who vowed that no other church structure would ever be allowed in the premises of Oyolu Oze Primary School. Dr. Eluemunoh announced the decision on the heels of the many controversies the demolition of the church building has attracted in the state, with Anglican leaders and lay men embarking on protests in the commercial town of Onitsha over the issue. Governor Willie Obiano is currently probing the incident and has appealed for calm.

Addressing reporters at Nkwelle Ezunaka, Eluemunoh said the Anglican Church must leave the school premises either in peace or in war because on no account would the community allow the church to claim the school it built in 1978 and handed over to the state government to manage.

He wondered why the church should claim that he supervised the demolition of the school when he was still in Abuja as a delegate to the recently concluded National Conference as at the time of the demolition.

Eluemunoh alleged that members of the church have been dropping lies around, all in a bid to get the people’s sympathy. According to the president general, contrary to the claim of the leaders of Anglican Church, there was no church in the school from the onset. He said it was in 1990 that some members of the church applied to be using one of the classrooms as a temporary place of worship.

Eluemuno said: “The Oyolu Eze School had existed for 12 years before the church applied for permission to be using one of the classrooms temporarily.

“The Anglican Church has land it acquired along the College of Education, Nsugbe, but instead of developing it, they went into government school to claim ownership.

“It is disheartening that those who call themselves pastors should be telling lies because they want to claim what does not belong to them. They are claiming that government gave them the property to manage, but that is not true as government had earlier written them that it would not cede part of the school to anybody.

“Besides, the school did not qualify as a mission school because all schools returned to the churches were built before the civil war and no church built any primary school on government premises since the end of the civil war.”

Eluemunoh urged the state government to implement the report of the panel that looked into the matter, adding that what the church was only working on a treadmill that would drive them to nowhere.

•Photo shows President General of Nkwelle Ezunaka community development association, Dr. Chris Eluemunoh.

Source: News Express

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