Acton Institute Powerblog

African Bishop: ‘Our Values Are Not For Sale’

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Bishop Emmanuel Badejo of Oyo, Nigeria and newly appointed Chairman of Communications for the African bishops, has some strong words for the West. Bishop Badejo believes help for Nigeria in fighting Boko Haram has been withheld because of Nigerians refusal to accept population control tactics from the Western world.

In a lengthy interview given in Rome, Badejo discusses his thoughts the Nigerian government, Boko Haram and Western policies and values.

In Yorubaland, human dignity and human life are sacred. Christianity came to baptize that. No one would convince me to accept that Christianity came just for the respect of human life. We had that before. You don’t just go ahead and kill somebody. There are many proverbs which encompass Yoruba wisdom. They say: you don’t fight until the point of death. When you have a fight, a disagreement or a conflict, you don’t go to the point of death, because you never know what happens tomorrow, and who you might need tomorrow.

I think that this lack of a cultural fiber, the maladministration of the past, the dissolution of the premises of a democratic government, and the millions of young people who have been left on the streets with no promise, no capacity at all, already prepared great ground for Boko Haram. It has something to latch on to.

When asked if Boko Haram could be conquered, the bishop said it would be very difficult, and then went on to say the West has withheld help because of Nigerian values:

Is it true that there is nobody in the West who can at least help to block the funding of Boko Haram? Is it true that there is really nothing that Europe and America can do about it? I think there is a complicity also in the West in what is happening.

I take it all back to the agenda of population control. That’s my theory. Anything that can reduce the population. There has been an inordinate alarm about the exploding populations in Africa. And anything that can be done to decrease or limit the growth of the population in Africa is quite welcome.

In fact, recently I was alarmed when I heard Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, say that the United States government was committed to anything that would push the population control agenda. The United States actually said it would help Nigeria with Boko Haram only if we modify our laws concerning homosexuality, family planning, and birth control. It’s very clear that a cultural imperialism exists. In fact, I think that Africa is suffering greatly from a cultural imperialism that threatens to erode our cultural values.

He went on to say that Africans value all human life as sacred and “a treasure.”

Read “Bishop Badejo of Nigeria: ‘African Values Are Not On Sale'” at Aleteia.

Elise Hilton Communications Specialist at Acton Institute. M.A. in World Religions.

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