The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Diocese of Lagos on Monday presented a Special Episcopal Award to the Governor of Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode, for his monumental achievements in all sectors and sections of the State in the last four years, saying the Governor deserved to be appreciated for excellent performance and selfless service to God and humanity.
Speaking while handing the award to the Governor on behalf of the Church during the first session of 34th Synod of the Diocese held at Our Saviours Church, Tafawa Balewa Square, Onikan, Diocesan Bishop of Lagos, Rt. Rev. Humphrey Olumakaiye, described Ambode as an administrator with a patriotic drive who, through hard work and grace, rose to become distinguished among his peers.
Olumakaiye said: “We are very proud of you (Governor Ambode) for taking Lagos State much higher. You have proved beyond doubts that there is a great hope for a better Nigeria through your transformational touch in this State.
“You are a man of courage who believes in possibilities against all odds; a man of focus and dignity. We are indeed very proud of you and we pray that God will grant your heart desires and take you to the next level of your political career.
“Today, we have decided to honour you in due recognition of your exceptional achievements as our Governor.”
The clergyman also commended Ambode for always identifying with the church, saying it was an eloquent indication of his love and undying passion for God and life of humility.
On his part, the immediate past Bishop of the Diocese, Most Rev. Adebola Ademowo, congratulated Governor Ambode for his achievements in the State in the last four years, saying his name was already written in gold.
“I want to congratulate our Governor for a very successful tenure. Your name has been written in gold and I do hope that Abuja will do something,” the respected clergyman said.
Responding, Ambode profusely thanked residents and faith-based organizations for cooperating with his administration to maintain law and order, saying it is on record that there was no single religious conflict in the State in the last four years.
The Governor said he was particularly proud of the relationship and massive support extended to him by religious leaders, which, according to him, resulted in peaceful co-existence and progress of the State.
He said: “To our Fathers in the Lord and clergymen, I thank you for all you have done to move Lagos forward in the past four years of my administration. I am proud of the relationship and support that has yielded the peaceful co-existence and atmosphere of love and brotherhood. For me, this is the strongest plank upon which the progress we have achieved rests.
“It is also on record that no single religious conflict was recorded in the last four years. The peaceful co-existence of all religious sects is a testimony of our collective heritage in the State.”
The Governor specifically commended the Church for the support, goodwill and prayers for the State and his administration, and urged that such should persist for the State to continue to enjoy social and economic development.
“As our administration makes way for another, I ask for your continued support and prayers for the in-coming government, the Governor-elect, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his team. I pray that as we continue to exhibit our faith in God and support for the social and economic development of our State, the Lord Almighty would continue to answer our prayers and grant the good desires of our hearts,” the Governor said.
Speaking on the theme of this year’s Synod: “The Unfailing Faith Of Our Fathers: Ever Sufficient,” which coincided with the centennial anniversary of the establishment of Lagos Diocese, Ambode said it was very apt and a call for Christians to remember who they are, and never despair even in the face of adverse circumstances.
He said: “Brothers and Sisters, faith is said to be the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Faith is one of the most essential ingredients needed to serve God. It is an unshakable belief in God that He would do all things and come through for us even in the midst of the storm and in the most difficult of all situations.
“As we put our faith in God, I urge you to also believe in our State and in our country. Our State is on an upward trajectory that needs everyone pulling in the same direction. We need cooperation, unity and peaceful co-existence to continue on this our growth curve.”
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