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The Pope And The Pandemic, Orobator’s metaphor for good leadership


Recently, the Catholic community came out in one accord to support their own and President, Jesuits Conference of Africa, Reverend Father A.E. Orobator. The event was the unveiling of his book, titled, The Pope And The Pandemic: Lessons In Leadership In Time Of Crisis.

The book, published by Orbit Books, New York, U.S.A, is on leadership.


According to Prof. Chris Ugbechie, the reviewer, the book attempts to write the autobiography of Pope Francis (Jorge Mario Bergoglio), the Catholic Pontiff. It x-rays his leadership style during the pandemic, adding that the period exposed a number of leadership challenges across the globe, especially in Africa.

He noted that countries that were mostly hit by the pandemic had one thing in common — bad leadership.

He revealed that female heads of state and governments performed better than their male counterparts in managing the situation, adding that this is a signal for women to vie for top positions in politics in 2023 in Nigeria and across the globe.


Why disclosing the reason the book was written, the author used the platform to lash out at Nigerian leaders for lack of empathy, which he described as the basic leadership qualities when the people are in crisis.

His words: “The reactions of the Nigerian government in time of crisis lacked leadership qualities and empathy. This deficit is responsible for the failure of government in the combat of the COVID-19 virus.”

The priest also lamented the sorry state of the nation’s healthcare sector, which he said the government has neglected for too long.


“Our leaders have neglected the health sector for too long. They fly out at will to access medical care overseas without efforts to improve healthcare facilities at home for the betterment of the people they lead,” he said.

Father Orobator described the Pope as a great leader whose leadership qualities are worthy of emulation by anyone in a leadership position, saying he got the inspiration to write the book from the selfless leadership qualities the Pope exemplified before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The book is not only about the Pope, especially as it also challenges everyone to ponder on the values that should guide our lives as family heads, community leaders, organisations lead team, among others. The pandemic will one day be over, but the lessons embedded in the book will endure for the good of the society,” he said.

Orobator, therefore, urged Nigerian leaders to imitate the Pope’s actions, which include closeness to the people, empathy, and building of bridges among various divides, adding that they must follow these examples to make the country a unique place to live in.

With the Very Rev. Fr. Chukwuyenum Afiawari as chief host and Omoba Adesina Braimoh, as chairman of the occasion, the event served as an avenue for the Jesuits priests to mingle with other priests.


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