By Fr. Anthony Adetayo

The Director of Social Communications of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, Rev. Fr. Anthony Godonu made a press release on Tuesday 8th March 2022 which exonerates Rev. Fr. James Anelu of Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Ewu Owa, from the accusations of tribal sentiments that was alleged against him in the first week of February 2022 which led to his leave of absence to allow for proper investigation on 7th February 2022. Different media houses; radio and television stations all had their share of the news to their various audiences.

According to the Press release, “Following a thorough investigation, conducted in consultation with the Parish Pastoral Council, the Parish Laity Council and Ad hoc Committee set up by the Archbishop, it was discovered that the posting on the social media that brought about the administrative leave did not give a complete picture of the incident. Fr. James has therefore been asked to return to the Parish in order to remedy the situation created by the social media posting and bring about reconciliation and unity in the parish. In the spirit of the Lenten season, he urged all the parishioners to work together in collaboration with the Parish priest for the greater glory of God and the good of the community.”

Rev. Fr. Anthony Godonu

In an online interview with Rev. Fr. Anthony Godonu with our correspondence, Fr. Godonu said sensationalism was at play in Fr. Anelu’s case. People should be very careful not to play to the gallery and cow the people. We should stop the use of exciting or shocking stories or language at the expense of accuracy, in order to provoke public interest or excitement.”

This is an evidence that Fr. Anelu was not guilty as it was presented few weeks ago and the Catholic Church is known for fair hearing and justice. We only need to pray for him, his parishioners and the Church at large.

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