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Sign death warrant for capital punishment, Jonathan urges govsPresident Goodluck Jonathan has urged state governors to sign death warrants of criminals condemned to death by courts of competent jurisdiction. This is even as he has expressed regret that discipline at home was gradually becoming extinct because of modern life.
He made the call yesterday at the special Fathers’ Day service organised by the Aso Villa Chapel. The President told the governors that the work they were elected to do had both the sweet and the ugly sides, hence, must not be seen as shying away from their responsibilities according to the law, no matter how painful.
According to him: “Discipline can be in various forms. In the states, it could be admonition. Magistrate can just admonish and allow an offender to go. From admonition to various forms of punishments, it could be imprisonment. The extreme is capital punishment.
“In the case of capital punishment, the state governors will sign. Even governors sometimes find it difficult to sign. I have been telling the governors that they must sign because that is the law. The work we are doing has a sweet part and an ugly part and we must perform both. No matter how painful it is, it is part of the responsibilities.”
Jonathan, speaking directly to fathers, urged them to ensure that they discipline their children when they erred.
He said it was important for parents, particularly fathers, to continually impress it on their children on the need to be upright in all their endeavours. The President recalled how he and his siblings always resorted to crying once they heard the voice of his late father approaching after they might have committed an offence.
While regretting that the good old discipline days were becoming extinct, Jonathan said, “if we look through all the references that have to do with the father in the Bible, you will see that we expect a father to show love. The father is the breadwinner of the family, to take care of the mother and the children, to provide food for them and take care of their education. We expect fathers to be role models where children will want to be like their fathers.
“I want to urge all of us who are fathers to discipline our children. No matter what you do, even if you show love and provide the needs of the family, if you don’t discipline your children, it is not good.
“Like my late father, when we were young, anytime we committed an offence and we heard his voice that he was coming, we will start crying. You will not wait to see him because you know what would happen to you.”
The President of the Church of Christ in Nigeria, Revd Soja Bewarang, in his sermon entitled: “Fathers’ Responsibility” said if Nigeria must move forward, those working with the President must refrain from stealing public funds and must be honest.
“If this country must survive, all men working under the President must practise honesty and they must not steal. He (the President) cannot fight corruption when you are not supporting him. He may try, but he cannot be everywhere. You are his representatives, so, you must practise honesty and you must not steal,” he said.
Bewarang identified three examples of Biblical fathers that Nigeria does not need to emulate, those he said pitched their tents towards Sodom like Lot; those who do not refrain their children like Eli and those who steal, deceptive and dishonest like Achan.
He asked Nigerians to pray for good fathers like Enoch; those who will walk with God like Noah; those who will feat and trust God like Joshua and men of faith like Abraham.
The special service, which had Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State as the special guest of honour was also attended by the President’s mother, Eunice; Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State; Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu and his wife; Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Tony Anenih; members of the Federal Executive Council; new Comptroller-General of Immigration, Mr. David Paradang; Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Dr. Ade Abolurin and members of the National Assembly.
Others were the Ambassador of Ireland in Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Fhearghail; the Israeli Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Uriel Palti; former House Leader, Tunde Akogun; Ndidi Elumelu and Nollywood stars among others. The organisers of the event under the leadership of Elumelu presented gifts of a guitar and a mobile telephone handset to the President to commemorate the day while other dignitaries also went home with different gifts.
Highlights of the service included special songs presentations by the fathers led by Jonathan and a drama sketch presented by children.
Source: The Sun