Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie on Nigerians and God

-Cardinal Anthony Olubunmi Okogie On Nigerians’ Attitude regarding God-
Archbishop Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, Archbishop Emeritus of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, has stated that “Nigerians of today don’t care a hoot about God”.

According to, he stated this during a recent interview with NewTelegraph. He reportedly said that the fear of God must be a priority for the citizens of Nigeria, in their quest for unity and sanity in the country.

Archbishop Okogie reportedly chided Pastor Enoch Adeboye, founder of Redeemed Christian Church, saying: “… I heard that one of my colleagues, Pastor Adeboye, said that he would love to build churches everywhere so as to make it easy for worshipers to walk to them. But for me, that is a useless statement.

How can you say you will build churches everywhere? What kind of churches are you talking about? Look at traffic in Lagos for example, and those who are pastors are traders and a good number of them are business men.”

“…. Such churches in most cases are more like business houses! Look at the number of churches springing up in Lagos. If the Muslims start building mosques like that, does it show that Nigeria is a religious country? Every day we hear of killings and other things that we were not hearing before.

Churches must ensure that there is fear of God. They just rent houses and in order to make more money, they license them. They pay their dues to the bosses in the churches, every one of them. Some of them can’t pay their own house rents. Yet every Sunday, they gather in the house there and say they are opening churches. One must think twice; and I don’t think that God wants us to serve him with force”.


Meanwhile, Archbishop Okogie’s remarks align with a message from an unnamed source, currently circulating in social media circles. The message compares Nigeria’s economy with the economies of countries considered as less “religious” and concludes that despite the proliferation of churches here, Nigerians are still more sinful than citizens of such countries. Here is the message:

“Finland has the most stable economy in world today. There are less than 20 churches in Finland. Switzerland has the second most stable economy in the world. Switzerland has less than 30 churches. Denmark is the third most stable economy in the world. Denmark has about 23 churches in it. These are countries considered largely atheist in nature, yet so blessed.

Come to Owerri town, SE Nigeria, from MCC junction to Toronto junction, there are 36 churches. That stretch of about 5 km harbours 36 churches, more churches than the entire Switzerland. Between Owerri and Mgbidi l counted 97 churches and gave up. According to CAC, Nigeria has over 23,000 registered churches.

We have more churches than schools and hospitals combined. More pastors than doctors and teachers combined. Everyone is born again. All are covered in the blood of Jesus. All are filled with the Holy Spirit. Yet none of those claims reflects in the expected moral elevation of society.

We are still one of the greediest, laziest, corrupt, deceitful, hypocritical and hateful set of beings on the planet today, with all our Christ and Holy spirit. Our people need to draw the line between religiosity and spirituality.”

At the time of filing this report, LinCornellah’s blog could not confirm if the number of churches in the countries mentioned above, are actually as few as cited in that post. Neither can we affirm the claim that Nigerians “are still one of the greediest, laziest, corrupt, deceitful, hypocritical and hateful set of beings on the planet today.” 

However, we affirm that some Nigerians are selfless, hardworking, morally upright, truthful, sincere and loving. Virtue is not exclusive to citizens of any country. Similarly, vice is not exclusive to any country.

We also affirm that just like what the author of the above post mentions about the proliferation of churches in Owerri, Imo State, churches exist in almost every street and lane in Calabar, Cross River State. For instance, there are three different churches located beside each other, directly facing where this report is being filed, in this city. Everyone in this neighborhood can clearly hear from loudspeakers mounted in one of these churches, that a “deliverance” session is currently taking place there.

It is a normal occurrence in Calabar and several places in Nigeria.

  • Cornelius Ellah

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