Nairametrics|Nigerians from all over the world were shocked on Saturday after news broke that the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) was stepping down. He had been the leader of the Church since 1981.

Things became clearer after it was revealed that all he just did was to resign as National Overseer, relinquishing the role for a higher International General Overseer. According to a statement signed by Leke Adeboye, the  last son and Personal Assistant of Pastor Adeboye, Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye remains the General Overseer, Worldwide of The Redeemed Christian Church of God.

They explained that his decision to step down as National Overseer was due to a provision in the Financial Reporting Council Regulation on Non-for Profit Organization which bars Founder/Leaders of organisations from being at the helm for a period exceeding 20 years.

The provision can be found in section 9 of the Not-For-Profit Organisations Governance Code 2016;

9. Position of the Founder or Leader

9.1.  The Founder or Leader of a NFPO occupies a special position in the Organisation and is committed to the success and longevity of the NFPO. Accordingly, a Founder or Leader should not take on too many responsibilities in the organisation or have an indefinite term in the running of the organisation.

9.2.  Where for any reason, a Founder or Leader of NFPO also occupies any of the three governance positions of Chairmanship of the Board of Trustees, the Governing Board or Council, and the Headship of the Executive Management (or their governance equivalents), the following provisions shall apply before the end of the organization’s financial year in which this Code takes effect.

9.2.1.  The Founder or Leader shall cease to occupy these three governance positions simultaneously. This is to ensure the separation of powers and avoid possible concentration of powers in one individual.

9.2.2.  The Founder or Leader may however choose – subject to the agreement of the organization’s apex authority as expressed in the Annual General Assembly, Annual Meeting, Annual Stakeholder Engagement, Annual Conference, Annual Synod, Annual Fellowship Assembly or their equivalents – only one of these three governance positions subject to his current tenure. This is to ensure a clear division of responsibilities at the head of the organization between the running of the governing body and the executive responsibility for the management and fulfilment of the organization’s mission.

9.3.  Where the Founder or Leader has occupied all or any of these three governance positions for more than twenty years, or is aged seventy years or above, the choice in section 9.2.2 above should only relate to the Board of Trustees as in section 9.4(c) below, except the constitution of the organisation otherwise provides.

In the case of religious or cultural organisations, nothing in this code is intended to change the spiritual leadership and responsibilities of Founders, General Overseers, Pastors, Imams and Muslim Clerics, Presidents, Bishops, Apostles, Prophets, etc. which are distinguishable from purely corporate governance and management responsibilities and accountabilities of the entities.

This is basically why he has had to resign from the being a National Leader. By being the General Overseer worldwide, he is still technically in charge of the Church spiritually. Whilst, he may not be able to sign documents or make official pronouncements on the businesses owned by the Church in Nigeria, the new local leader will still report to him and take instructions from him.

The news of his stepping down is an eye opener to other churches and non-for profit organisations who have leaders that have occupied offices for decades.

You can download the regulation below;

Download (PDF, Unknown)


  1. I have come to understand one thing about laws, that if a law is not realistic or agreed upon as just by the governed, it will eventually either become irrelevant, be disregarded, abused or eventually cause some form of uprising. This is apart from the various philosophies behind the separation of the church and the state (a phenomenon upheld in the West) and the phenomenon of social contract where the state is merely there because of the populace and the services it gives to the populace and as such its activities must move in tandem with the wishes of the populace (a phenomenon that eventually led to the great argument for democracy).

    The code of corporate governance being touted by FRCN is clearly against the wishes of most people that it seeks to bring under its regulatory net (that’s if they want to be under their net). Also, what is the value that the FRCN is adding to these organisations with the added bureaucracy and admin costs its piling on them). It will be interesting to see how the people react as more information comes out and more people understand the reality behind these laws.

    As it is with most laws in these countries, there is a terrible disconnect behind the wishes and aspiration of the people (both workers and business owners alike) and what our constitution is. I just hope we do not suffer the pains the West suffered as the political landscape evolved to where it is today.

    Political and economic history is something I find is missing within people here in Nigeria. Even those that should know, know nothing. And when you don’t know history, mistakes are bound to be made. Terrible ones sometimes.

    By the way, these religious institutions will continue to restructure themselves out of Nigeria and the value they created will move with them. The schools, the employment opportunities, the development that came with their presence, might be affected.

    • I thought FRCN’s Code of Conduct was suspended by the Senate late 2016. Nairametrics please correct me if i’m wrong

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