Christian Association of Nigeria on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to brand Boko Haram as a foreign terrorist organisation
CAN added that the attacks on Sabon-Gari, Kano, Gusau and the suspension of the only female Christian legislator in the Bauchi State House of Assembly for allegedly opposing the relocation of the headquarters of a local government were suggestive of a “deliberate plan” to destroy Christianity in the northern part of the country.
The association’s President, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, stated this in a statement by his Special Assistant (Media and Communication), Mr. Kenny Ashaka.
Oritsejafor said, “In as much as our heart goes to the Muslim victims in this latest suicide attack on Sabon Gari, Kano, a ward predominantly occupied by indigenous and non-indigene Christians, we feel the attacks on Kano, Gusau and the travails of the only Christian female legislator were a signpost of the intended extermination of Christians and Christianity from northern Nigeria.
“The barbaric and sustained bomb and gun attacks on innocent Nigerians are the reasons why CAN is calling on the Federal Government to support our call for the branding of the Boko Haram sect as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation. The Federal Government should liaise with the international communities and obtain their expertise in order to deal with the terror acts.
“I plead with the government to fish out the sponsors of Jama’atul Ahlis Sunnah Lidda’awati Wal commonly called Boko Haram and the Islamic group, Jama’atu Ansaril Muslimina fi Sudan known as Ansaru, an al-Qaeda-aligned group and a splinter group, which specialty is the kidnapping and killing of Christian foreigners. Those betraying others by working underground with enemies of the nation should also be fished out and dealt with in accordance with the laws of the land.”
The CAN President noted particularly that the bombing of a Lagos-bound luxury bus, which killed over 50 persons was “evil, tragic and condemnable.”
The association challenged the Kano State Government to liaise more effectively with security agencies in order to forestall a recurrence, noting that the “state has become one of the critical places for Boko Haram violence, a place where violence is likely to break out suddenly”.
According to CAN, the Federal Government cannot continue to condemn these heinous acts of “the enemies of unity and agents of death without prosecuting those already arrested.”
The group said, “This does not add up in any way. The Federal Government should do the right thing by prosecuting those already in its net with proven record of complicity.”
Praising security agencies for upholding the tenets of their profession, the CAN President urged them to gather and share intelligence information in order to boost their job and crackdown on the insurgents.
Oritsejafor, who called on Nigerians to volunteer information to security agencies, also urged religious leaders to be cautious in their interpretation of the holy books.
He said, “These leaders must re-examine the weak points and deficiencies in their method of preaching. The proponents of amnesty to Boko Haram sect members should have a rethink and join concerned Nigerians to fish out these bloodthirsty and callous killers that reside among them.
“I call on Islamic religious leaders to rise and expose those who have sullied the good face of Islam, those who have created a contaminated image of their religion. Those who speak about the perversion of their religion should condemn those replacing Islamic logic with their feelings and desires. For the growth of a well developed younger generation, we, the religious leaders, must work together to solve this problem of terror, an instrument that is certainly not approved by God.”