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Weekend That Changed The World

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The Easter celebration remains a cardinal and central doctrine to the Christian faith worldwide. It is a strategic pillar upon which Christianity stands. This is because Easter encompasses the arrest, humiliation, crucifixion, death, burial and above all, the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
It is the climax of the passion of Jesus Christ preceded by the Lenten period that is characterized by prayer and fasting preparatory to ascension to glory of God, the Son-(Jesus).
Easter was heralded by Maundy Thursday before the Triduum. Maundy Thursday, also known as the Holy Thursday, reminds Christian faithful of the washing of feet and the Last Supper Jesus Christ had with His disciples‘ wherein He announced the impending agony ahead and how one of the disciples would betray Him – Jesus.
These activities culminated in the Triduum, referring to the totality of the three days that make up the weekend which changed the world.
This weekend traverses the famous Good Friday, Saturday, in which He was still in the grave and the Glorious Resurrection morning which took place on Sunday. This is the reason Sunday has become an important day of worship than the famous Sabbath Day on Saturday.
This weekend, no doubt, is not only remarkable and inexplicable, but a mystery in the history of God – human relations. No matter one’s creed or religious affiliation, the story of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from death is thought-provoking.
At this juncture, it may be pertinent to ask, why was Jesus Christ crucified in the first place? It will be recalled that during Jesus Christ’s earthly ministry, He had been misunderstood when He said in St. John Gospel Chapter 2 verse 19, “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up”.
The expression “this temple” was probably misunderstood to mean the temple that David, Solomon and the founding fathers of faith built in ancient Jewish settlement.
It was unacceptable for the son of an ordinary carpenter to say “Before Abraham I was” as recorded in John 5:18. Again, this was blasphemy. Worse still, Jesus Christ called Almighty God His Father and referred to Himself as Son of God. In other words, His claim to Lordship and posture to Divine Authority deserved death.
It is worthy of note that the penchant for preaching peace, mercy, grace and forgiveness was ambivalent and aversed to the doctrine of “an eye for an eye”, which the Jews were exposed to under the Mosaic Law. This was the reason they condemned Jesus when He ate with sinners and tax collectors.
This is not to trivialize the fact that when Jesus proclaimed His Mesiahship, it was largely considered a treasonable felony since the Jews were colonized and in fact under the imperialistic dominance of Romans Empire at the time.
It was the rationale behind the arrest by the Sanhedrin but was sentenced by Pontius Pilate, the Governor of Jerusalem at the time. Besides, in Redemptive theology the death of Jesus is largely seen as a ransom sacrifice to God in payment for inherited sins.
In other words, in the Ransom Theory of Atonement, Christians believe that by the death of Jesus Christ they are partakers in the new covenant with God and thus creates an open door to both the Jews and Gentiles in the new relationship with God. This also means that the way to God under the Ransom Theory of Atonement is through Jesus Christ alone.
Unfortunately, some other religions have expressed disapproval and melancholy with the ransom theory of Atonement, calling it the arrogance of the Christian faith.
Be that as it may, the claim of Jesus Christ that He would destroy the temple and raise it up in three days, remains infallible and inexplicable over the past two thousands years and that is the joy and memory of Easter that shook the world.
Interestingly, the level of Mercy, Grace and Forgiveness of sins inherent in faith in Jesus Christ is unending, priceless and unimaginable and goes to confirm that Jesus is not selective and discriminatory in granting rest to all who are heavy laden.
As He said in John 14:3 and if I go and prepare a place for you I will come and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. This is true since God is not a man that He should lie. To this end, humanity must learn to respect the grace and purpose of an individual than his family background or his social status in society.
Moreover, Resurrection is not only real but a person and the hope of Christians in Jesus Christ.
Truly, this is the weekend that has changed and shaken the world for the better.
Sika wrote in from PH.

 

Baridorn Sika

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Opinion

The Tomfoolery of RIVLEAF

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There indeed seems to be no end, as far as nay sayers are concerned, in the quest to frustrate the efforts being made by the Rivers State Government to ensure that the spread of the coronavirus in Rivers State is reasonably checked.
On a daily basis, this becomes more apparent to the chagrin of genuinely concerned people of the State.
Although it is not a surprise that RIVLEAF, supposedly a pressure group has always announced itself as a purveyor of ill-contrived negative information, its latest attempt to dismiss a genuine alarm raised by the Rivers State Government regarding a foreseen build-up to a declaration of State of emergency in the State, has further exposed the membership of the organisation as persons with cowardly and sychophantic intentions.
At a time like this, when the whole world is still baffled over the COVID-19 pandemic, which has not only exposed even the hitherto world super powers in all spheres of their existence, but has so made it clear that everyone must be involved in order to check the pandemic, all RIVLEAF has to offer is an attempt to discredit the world acclaimed efforts of the Rivers State

Government under the leadership of Governor Nyesom Wike to ensure that the coronavirus does not get to the stage of Community transmission in the State.
It is indeed an irony of faith, that people who say they’re a pressure group do not actually know what it means to be a pressure group. They do not know, for instance, that one key role of a pressure group in the development of a society is to provide specialised and expert information to the government and explain government policies to the understanding and benefit of the general public. Thus they are an important link between the government and the people.
This explains their choice of caption, “Governor Wike Needs Help”, and the fact that rather than address in cogent terms the issue at stake, all they could do is to seek to raise irrelevant issues to cause rife between the President and the Governor, and with his Deputy.
What is really “funny and disturbing” about a clear statement that there is “a plan to declare a state of emergency in Rivers State? And, rather than categorically state what makes it funny and disturbing, all Onyeche Nnatah Peters could say is that Governor Wike “boasted that he was beyond the reproach of the Federal Government and, could do and undo as he so wishes”.
This statement in itself is a confirmation of the Governor’s proclamation of a plot to declare a state of emergency in the State, for reasons that have to do with Wike being seen as somebody who must be dealt with. The question is, for what reason?.
The most clear answer to this question is that from the point he started preparing to be the Governor of Rivers State, through his first tenure, and about a year into his second tenure, Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike had had to accept the peculiarities of Rivers State in the present State of affairs in the country, and had adjusted to the point of being able to provide good governance to Rivers people as minimally as possible in the face of unrelenting and determined efforts to frustrate him.
This is why every step of governance he has taken has turned out to be timely, and lauded in the given circumstance it is taken by all well-meaning public globally, especially as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic, which the world knows is a new virus, hence decisions to combat it are mostly taken based on the exigencies of the moment. This is, of course, knowing the peculiarity of the virus as it relates to Nigeria, and Rivers State in healthcare delivery.
To say the least, Governor Wike has been setting the pace in steps taken to contain the coronavirus across Nigeria: amongst others, he was the first to set up an Interministarial COVID-19 Committee, the first to set up a palliatives committee, first to declare border lockdown, etc.
Even in the face of clear attempts to sabotage his efforts, Wike had been undeterred towards ensuring that the State does not get to Community transmission of the virus as is the case with some States. Beyond this determination to give good and transparent leadership to a people who understand his every step, and so are fully behind him, what else can the likes of RIVLEAF blame Wike of?
If the membership of RIVLEAF are truly of Rivers origin, and have the State at heart, they should be in a better position to appreciate the kind of development the State has recorded in the last five years.
Therefore, seeking to forment trouble where there’s none, such as between the Governor and his Deputy, Dr Ipalibo Harry-Banigo, is a wasteful venture. This is because Rivers people have come to know what the interest of RIVLEAF is, and it has nothing to do with the overall interest of Rivers people.
Soibi Max-Alalibo
SA on Media to the Hon Commissioner for Information and Communications
Rivers State
May 21, 2020.
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Opinion

Dakuku Should Stop Playing To The Gallery

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Sociologists have what they call “Looking Glass Theory”. The crux of this theory is that people are prone to naming others, or something, by what they truly are, or what they have in store as experience.
For someone whose dream to be governor had been scuttled severally because of his unpopularity ,one can easily understand where Dakuku Peterside is coming from.
In his veiled attempt to be one of those who “came out openly to oppose Governor Nyesom Wike” at this point in time he exposed himself as a political toddler.
 All over the world today, well-meaning people are joining hands with their governments to check the spread of the pandemic.
Unfortunately, it is in this context that Dr Dakuku Peterside has displayed his lack of knowledge of the key ingredients of governance at crisis periods.
The need for law and order at all times, more so in crisis periods as the COVID-19 pandemic has instituted globally, compels governments  to take painful but necessary actions to save lives.
Thank God Dakuku Peterside supports “the Governor to ensure that the state is free from Coronavirus”, but how he expects this to come to fruition if people disobey directives put in place at will, raises a huge question mark.
In the light of  his latest condemnation of the Governor’s order to demolish two hotels found to have flouted a lockdown directive, Dakuku has again displayed his penchant for grandstanding.
Maybe he should learn some lessons from the role played by the  Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva who attracted Federal presence  to Bayelsa State during this period eventhough he belonged to the opposition in home State.
Dakuku’s stance in the face of an affront on an Executive Order which resulted in the demolition of two hotels in Eleme yesterday, without  considering the true circumstances that led to the demolition questions his citizenship as a Rivers son.
He should know what it means  to attack people authorised to perform legitimate duties under an  Executive Order.  Dakuku would not have declared genuine people-oriented actions by Governor Wike as “destructive” if he was well informed.
Rivers people are not foolish enough not to know that but for the stringent proactive measures put in place to check the spread of the virus by Governor Wike, the State would have entered community transmission like some other States in the Country.
Dakuku Peterside should therefore desist from the temptation of endangering the lives of the people he pontificates to care for, knowing that every act has its day of reckoning.
Soibi Max-Alalibo,
SA on Media to the Hon Commissioner
Ministry of Information and Communications
Rivers State.
May 11, 2020
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Opinion

Austin Tam-George: An Intellectual Prostitute Let Loose

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Austin Tam-George has consistently been biting the finger that fed him because he is an intellectual prostitute.
He looks for every available opportunity to lampoon Governor Nyesom Wike in order to impress his paymasters as a paid hack without conscience.
Someone like Austin Tam-George does not have the moral standing to discuss governance because his tenure as Commissioner for Information in Rivers State was a monumental failure.
A man who used his first month in office as Commissioner to throw 2O Rivers indigenes who were earning a living in the Ministry as casual workers into the unemployment market surely loves Rivers State.
Perhaps Austin Tam-George’s patriotism also led him to seize the monthly imprests meant for Departments in the Ministry.
Maybe he should explain to Rivers people and the those he is serving why a Commissioner should arm twist Heads of Parastatals under him to make monthly returns to quench his voracious appetite for money.
Was it not his kinsman in one of the parastatals that engaged him in a verbal warfare along William Jumbo Street in Port Harcourt that helped to tame his unquenchable taste for money?
His grouse with Governor Wike is because the over inflated and bogus proposals he made under the guise of upgrading the State Media Houses without recourse to the Bureau for Public Procurement were turned down by the governor who insisted on due process.
Austin Tam-George was quoted as saying that he will never forgive Governor Wike for not allowing him dupe the government.
The likes of Austin Tam-George are always available for the highest bidder that is why his recent outburst should not be taken seriously.
When he was looting the money generated by parastatals under him he never remembered United Nations and European Union.
As the proverbial dog that eats the bone hung on his neck, he milked the media houses dry before he was sacked from the State Executive Council.
He should know that the record of monies siphoned from the Media houses are still in the archives and will be released if he dares to make any more noise.
If Governor Wike did not retain him in his cabinet because he lacked character is it enough to look for any slightest opportunity to impugn his integrity?
Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. A word is enough for the wise.
Paulinus Nsirim, Commissioner for Information and Communications, Rivers State
May 11,2020.
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