Akpan Etukudoh Asare
Long list of traditional chieftains, politicians, Muslim leaders, security personnel as well as over one million faithful of the religions group were in Calabar Nigeria over the weekend to pay tribute to and to join the celebration of the 100 years birthday of a renowned spiritual leader otherwise called The Sole Spiritual Head of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, a Christian spiritual organization.
These dignitaries traveled from far flung places such as Abuja, Lagos, Ondo, Akwa Ibom Kaduna, as well as those residents in Cross River State including Muslim groups and other organizations converged at the UJ Esuene Stadium Calabar where the one year long planning and celebration had climaxed.
Adherents of the faith also came from countries such as the Uniter Kingdom, United States, Ghana, South Africa, Germany, Trinidad and Tobago etc to bring their gifts and songs in honour of a being they well acclaim as the Godhead.
One of the Muslim leaders who came fro Abuja to grace the celebration, the chief Imam and chairman of InterFaith Committee, an arm of Islamic religion in Bwari, Abuja, Sheikh Dr Ibrahim Yusuf Idris disclosed that the religion of Islam will work closely with Brotherhood of the Cross and Star to promote and entrench unity amongst religions and the tribes in Nigeria as advocated by Leader Olumba Olumba Obu, founder of the BCS.
He said they have extensively studied the works, preaching and actions of Leader Olumba Olumba Obu, the founder and spiritual leader of BCS, Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, and that these have aligned with the teaching of Islam which they propagate, saying both can come together engender unity in the country and mankind.
Sheikh Idris led a large delegation of Islamic leaders and faithful to attend the 100 years birthday celebration of the renowned spiritual leader which grand event held at the UJ Esuene Stadium Calabar.
Speaking extensively on the ideals of peace and unity,, Idris said Olumba Obu is a different religious leader and gift to the country whose teaching and sole aim are to unite humanity and religions as well as reform and free man from vices
He said the country Nigeria was suffering much because of deep seated hatred for the people, division and lack of respect for different peoples and religions, adding that the Interfaith committee was pleased that one man was tirelessly working at bringing understanding amongst Nigerians.
He cautioned against religious intolerance and violence saying Islam was against such things that disunite or cause harms, and stressed on political, religious and social unity.
“Nigerians must come together. Nigerians must eschew division, and the political leadership, too, should learn to work towards ideals which promote unity. We as an Islamic group have decided to partner the spiritual leader of BCS whose aims and works are towards unity. This way, we want to reduce violence and intolerance amongst religions and tribes in the country”, he said.
Planning committee Chairman of the Centenary Celebration, Christ Shepherd, Patriarch Bassey Imowo recounted that apart from teaching his teeming adherents about divine ideals, Obi has singlehandedly impacted economic fortunes of many South-South states through establishment of several economic ventures, employment, scholarships, welfare centres and philanthropic services
The 12 hour celebration at the Calabar stadium which is reported to have been donated by the state governor, Prof Ben Ayade for the celebration was filled to capacity by especially the BCS faithful from across many countries.
There were array of varieties to celebrate the centennial birthday, including songs of praises, drama sketches by children groups, artists and citations including prayer requests from different continents.
In their different remarks, the dignitaries who were given opportunity to speak extolled the sterling qualities of Leader Obu saying these were unrivalled by any human.
According to them, Obu is nothing more than a divine being who is the Lord Jesus Christ comeback.