CHANGE: Buhari Shuts Down Children’s Church In Aso Rock, Orders Chapel Relocation...

CHANGE: Buhari Shuts Down Children’s Church In Aso Rock, Orders Chapel Relocation (DETAILS)

By News Desk | The Trent on September 16, 2015
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Oyedepo ISlamist Chief Justice CAN General Muhammadu Buhari APC Nigeria
President Muhammadu Buhari, salutes his supporters during his Inauguration in Abuja, Nigeria, Friday, May 29, 2015. | AP/Sunday Alamba

As reported by The Trent on September 3, 2015 there may be plans by the presidency to relocate the Aso Villa Chapel from the Presidential Villa due to its closeness to President Muhammadu Buhari’s official residence.

Following the national uproar that greeted our exclusive report, the Nigerian Presidency responded with stiff denials. Presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina vehemently denied that such an incident ever happened on his Twitter and Facebook pages. Prince Laolu Akanda, media adviser to Vice President Osinbajo and a pastor in the Redeemed Christian Church of God, also flatly denied the report on Twitter.

RELATED: INTOLERANCE: President Buhari Orders Closure Of Aso Rock Villa Church

According to a source at the Presidency who spoke to Vanguard, aides of the president had on Sunday, August 30 attempted to stopping worshipers from using the facility, thereby causing a national uproar as Nigerians condemned the move in no uncertain terms, with many accusing the President of religious intolerance.

According to investigations, security agents at the villa had on Saturday, August 29, 2015 attempted to stop choristers from gaining access to the building for rehearsals by erecting canopies for the service to be held outside.

Professor Yemi Osinbanjo and wife, Dolapo visit the Children's Church in Aso Rock Chapel in the Presidential Villa and takes a group photo with the kids his first Sunday as Vice President on May 31, 2015 (Photo Credit: Sesco)
Professor Yemi Osinbanjo and wife, Dolapo visit the Children’s Church in Aso Rock Chapel in the Presidential Villa and takes a group photo with the kids his first Sunday as Vice President on May 31, 2015 (Photo Credit: Sesco)

But the plan was said to have leaked, prompting Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to intervene by reaching out to President Buhari before service could be held in the chapel.

The source said: “Osinbajo was uncomfortable with the plan and he had to reach out to the President before service could be held that day in the chapel.”

Vanguard also confirmed The Trent’s report  that the children’s church had been shut and some of the rooms converted to shops for storing food items.

The closure of the children’s church has prompted their services to be held in the office of the Chaplain, Seyi Malomo, for their normal service.

RELATED: #SoundOff: Buhari And Aso Rock Chapel: For God And Country

A source posited thus: “As we speak, the children’s church remains shut and everything relating to the church has been removed. We had to beg them to allow us to remove our property. The children’s church has been turned into a store.

“As a result of the unforeseen development, we had to collapse some facilities to accommodate the children and keep our worship going.”

When contacted, the Chaplain said that it had not been shut, adding that ‘we only had some procedural issues that needed to be sorted out’.

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