The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Dr. Samson Ayokunle, yesterday, condemned the federal government’s inability to stop the mindless killings in Southern Kaduna.
He declared that the government appeared to have lost control of the situation in the troubled community.
Ayokunle, who is also the President of The Nigerian Baptist Convention, spoke at a press conference in Abuja yesterday, ahead of the 104th Annual Session of the Nigerian Baptist Convention that begins in Abuja from today.
The Baptist Convention President said: “Just a few days ago, news broke again that some Fulani herdsmen allegedly hacked another 13 people to death in Southern Kaduna. The government appeared not to be in control of this situation yet. I pray that it will not get out of hand. Nigerians need not to continue to lose their lives like this where we have a government in place with all the tools to provide security.
“Late last year, government announced that it was establishing a military battalion in addition to a squadron of Mobile Police just to curb this menace. It is therefore a wonder that innocent lives are still being lost despite these efforts. It was gratifying to note the swiftness with which the Police apprehended suspects in the Ile-Ife communal clash. It is however, a wonder that since Fulani herdsmen have been killing farmers from every corner of the country, neither the police nor other security agencies have been able to be as prompt in making arrests and seeing prosecution through.
“In February this year, the United States House of Representatives cited Nigeria as the most dangerous place for Christians in the world. Certainly, this is a most unpleasant classification for a country that is a democracy and the giant of Africa. What type of giant are we? It is a classification that should not make patriotic Nigerians glad in a country where population is roughly divided equally between Islam and Christianity.”
Ayokunle said it was essential for the federal government in whose care instruments of cohesion lie to quickly remedy this situation in Southern Kaduna.
“It will be in the interest of national development and peaceful co-existence. If continuous killings have not been happening, we would not have been shouting wolf where there was none. We appeal to the government to desist from giving excuses why the killings are still occurring. We want an end to the killings henceforth. Enough is enough.”
However, the CAN President appreciated the federal government for waging war against Boko Haram and for sustaining it.
He saluted the courage of the soldiers on the war front, describing them as “our gallant military” and said the Baptist family shall continue to pray for them “over this good work of defending the people.”
Ayokunle added: “Equally, the release of 21 of the several Chibok girls kidnapped three years ago is commendable but more effort is solicited for the release of the rest before their lives are completely ruined for no sin of theirs.
”We commend as well the recent efforts of the federal government on the economy, especially in strengthening the local currency. More sincerity should be shown on this so that the siege of economic hardship that has almost crippled the lives of Nigerians and increased the rates of suicide might be lifted. Salaries owed the workers all over the nation must be paid without delay. My Bible says that the wages of the workers must not be delayed overnight.”
The CAN President expressed worry about a skewed political appointment, saying “all must be done in political appointments and in the conduct of government business to reflect federal character not only on ethnicity but also ensuring religious balance.”
He added: “The suspicion of favouritism by the government of one religious group to the detriment of others must be avoided. The more the government adheres to these admonitions, the more coherent we would be as a people and the greater the peace and development.”
Source: This Day