The Catholic Bishop of Nsukka Diocese, Most Rev. Godfrey Onah, the Anglican Archbishop of Enugu Ecclesiastical Province, Most Rev. Emmanuel Chukwuma, and the Enugu State Association of Presidents-General of Town Unions, have thrown their weights behind the efforts of the Government of Enugu State to end sit-at-home in the state starting from Monday, June 5, saying it is long overdue.
They equally expressed total support for Governor Peter Mbah’s call for the release of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra Nnamdi Kanu, from detention, saying it is the path to national healing and stability in the South-East region.
Speaking to reporters after leading a prayer session for a smooth end to sit-at-home in Enugu State and the entire South-East at the the Chapel of Redemption, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, on Sunday, Rev. Chukwuma, who also doubles as the Anglican Bishop of Enugu Diocese, appealed to the people to support the government’s move through compliance.
He said, “Government has given directive. My advice and appeal is that they should comply so we can save the economy of the South-East.’’
Also, in his homily at the St. Theresa’s Cathedral Nsukka, Bishop Onah, while commending the governor’s initiative to end the sit-at-home, said the suffering in the land was too much.
He urged the people to give the new governors of the South-East the benefit of the doubt.
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Onah said, “Please, everybody should have mercy. Those that are angry should calm down. Many of us are angry, but we have to be careful how we express our anger or we may cause more problems.
“It’s in this spirit that I understand the initiative by some state governments in the South-East, especially the newly inaugurated government in Enugu State, to try to restore normalcy in the South-East.’’
On their part, the Presidents-General of Enugu State Town Unions wondered why Enugu State should continue to be on lockdown every Monday whereas “both private and pubic offices in the capitals of other states of the South-East region had since resumed businesses, wondering why Enugu’s case should be different.”
In a statement by the Coordinating PG, Paully Ezeh, the association said the loss of Mondays since September 2021 had resulted in untold hardships and caused incalculable economic loss in the state and the South-East.
“The governor’s promise to transform Enugu from a public sector economy to a private sector-driven economy; raise the state’s Gross Domestic Product from the present $4.4bn to $30bn in eight years, make Enugu one of the top three economies, restore public water supply in the Enugu metropolis in 180 days, and eradicate poverty can’t happen if we continue to sit at home on Mondays. It presents our state to investors as restive, insecure, and unproductive place.
“The association, therefore, appeals to both private and public institutions and people of Enugu to support the government’s efforts to restore full days of work and productivity in the state.”