It was a reunion of sorts at the weekend, when Governor Adams Oshiomhole and former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Tony Anenih, met in church during the 10th anniversary of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church, Benin City, where the Governor was given an award for his services to the church.
Oshiomhole, while noting the efforts of the church in nation building, said: “Nigerians are living in relative peace and harmony today, in spite of the failings and weaknesses of political leadership at all levels, due to the power of your intercession, the power of your prayers.
“We cannot thank you enough for your prayers and your support in spite of our weaknesses.”
He praised the Catholic Church for bringing people of different political persuasions together under one roof for the church programme.
He said: “Yesterday, I found myself sitting in the front row, and then, I realised that most of those drivers and shakers of politics and ‘politicking’ in Edo State, are all Catholics. That, for me, is revealing.
“For me, the church has caused all of us to reunite. So, I reunite with my daddy, Chief Tony Anenih, and several other PDP and APC leaders. And the Catholic Church brought together the National Chairman of APC sitting side-by-side with the National Leader of the PDP.
“May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ continue to moderate our actions and remind us of our oneness, of our commonality and of our shared commitment to work together to uplift our state and our great nation.”
The governor also thanked the church for the award, saying “I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the honour done to me by being invited to receive an award”.
On his part, Anenih who used the opportunity to say he has ‘forgiven’ the governor whom he referred to as his son, said his immediate past health challenges made him realise the need to rise above politics and embrace peace with all men.
He said: “I was in St. Paul’s Church in Benin, and as my son, Comrade Adams said, we were all there appreciating the efforts of the Archbishop.
“I want to say this, it is not because Adams is here. Last night, I was telling my wife that I met Adams in the church, and with my immediate medical experience, I have decided to forgive all those who offended me. And I specifically mentioned Adams.
“Adams, without you saying it, I have forgiven you. As you said when you were in labour, as President, you were my son and you know it. You came into politics and you remain my son. So, the common cook that used to cook ogbono soup for us is still there.”
The anniversary was attended by the Edo State APC Chairman, Mr Anselm Ojezua; his PDP counterpart, Mr Dan Orbih; former Governor Oserheimen Osunbor and former Governor of Delta State, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, among others.