By Samson Ochono.
When a deacon of the holy Catholic Church is to be ordained a priest, he takes an oath before the Bishop. It is the oath of perpetual chastity (he will not get married after his ordination). The priest also makes a further promise of obedience to his Bishop and his successors.
All priests vow obedience to the Church under the authority of their Order. They promise to place the interests of the Church and the community before their own. As such, they perform all priestly duties for which they are ordained, serving where and when directed by their Bishop. They also promise to submit to rules laid out by their Bishops and abide by any discipline or correction administered by the Church. They promise to recognize and follow the clerical hierarchy of the Church.
The above was the same oath that the suspended priest Hyacinth Alia took 33 years ago when he was ordained. Sadly, he has violated that oath and left priesthood to search for worldly pleasures.
A reverend father who was not obedient to God almighty after taking the sacred oath will not blink an eye betraying ordinary mortals. Benue beware!
Recently while unveiling his manifesto which a group came out to raise alarm that it was plagiarized from an earlier work by another contestant, Alia admitted that he left priesthood to become a career politician. This did not come as a shock to people who have known him for some years. He has never been a priest in the true sense of it. Anything he did was for his personal gain. He was a trader wearing the cassock. He sold salted water to parishioners and faked healings. None of those he claimed to cure is known in any part of Benue state. He diverted church funds and cement to build his personal houses but could not build even a toilet for any of the churches where he worked as a priest. Fake man!
Alia’s desperation to acquire power and live a life of affluence has taken him to meet with Gov El Rufai of Kaduna and Gov Masari of Katsina State and some top Fulani personalities to sponsor his ambition. He has entered into an agreement with the Fulanis that if he wins the governorship of Benue state, he will repeal the open grazing prohibition and ranches establishment law of the state and grant them free access to lands.
The commitment of Alia has impressed Fulani so much that Miyetti Alla groups have started coming out to endorse him. The deal is simple – “give me money to run my campaign and when I win, I will surrender Benue lands into your hands.” No promise can be sweeter to Fulani pastoralists than that.
But Alia has the shock of his life coming. Benue people have got wind of his pact with the Fulanis and are very angry. The people are armed with their PVCs to humiliate the fake priest come March 11 2023 when the governorship election will hold.
Ochono writes from Apo, Abuja.