Against their teachings and their doctrine that we should not discriminate against one another as it is against the bible which wants us to love our neighbors as ourselves, it can be surprising sometimes when those we expect to lead when it comes to issues relating to love and tolerance are found wanting on the same issue.
Bishop David Eniola Oyedepo is a man who many see as an embodiment of tolerance as his teachings prove so. Apart from his normal teaching which is based on Faith, he had at different occasions talked extensively on tolerance. It is therefore appalling that a gross act of intolerance will happen in a place where he’s the head.
It happened at his church-owned university,CovenantUniversity, during the current admission process. One Abdul-Gafar Ayomide Salami is doing all his best to secure admission into the institution for the next academic session. During the last JAMB examination where he scored 295, based on his performance he was invited for the post- JAMB exam which was conducted by the university authority. He again performed excellently, with average score of 65/80. His West African Senior School Certificate Examination stated that he passed with good grades in the following subjects as listed; Economics – B3, Geography – A1, English Language – B3, Further Math – A1, Mathematics – A1, Agric Science – B3, Biology – B3, Chemistry – B2, Physics – B2,
While they were waiting for the school authority, the family of Gafar was so sure that with his results, no matter what he was going to secure admission.
But the family got a rude shock when they were told that the school management had decided not to admit Muslim students for the coming academic session. According to the father of the young boy, who spoke to us: “Initially I thought it was kind of April Fool joke and I decided to send my wife to go and find out what exactly was going. But to to our consternation the admissions officer simply confirmed that they were not admitting any Muslim student this year.”
He said further that he couldn’t believe what he was hearing and he felt that he was in some kind of trance or that he was in another country because he had never in his entire life heard something like that, which is against the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He has vowed to follow the case to a logical conclusion even if it means going to the court. “It is not about my child alone, but so that the discrimination and bigotry will not continue in future,” he affirmed.
The issue is casting a shadow on the many awards the university may have won in the past as many are condemning the management of the school for getting themselves involved in such condemnable act. There was a time in the past that a member of the church who lost a child in one of the schools owned by church was furious over the nonchalant attitude of the school management which led to the death of the child.
It is expected that the Chancellor and the Vice-Chancellor will act fast on this current issue as it is not only a dent on the image of the school but also a question of truthfulness on the school to Christianity, which the school professes based on its affiliation with the Living Faith Tabernacle, or Winners’ Chapel, as the Oyedepo-led church is also known.
Meanwhile, all efforts to speak with the school authority to hear their own version of the incident story didn’t succeed because the person who picked the phone claimed that he was not in the best position to talk on the issue but promised to relay our question to the appropriate quarters. He promised they would call us back but we had not heard anything from them as at the time of going to press.