Chris Steven, Abuja
The leadership of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has reacted to calls by the Kaduna state Council of Imams and Ulama in which the Council was demanding for the arrest of leadership of the association over the on-ongoing killings in Southern Kaduna, describing them as hypocrites.
The Christian umbrella body in a statement issued on Wednesday by its General Secretary, Reverend Musa Asake said that demand of these Muslims preachers has again reaffirmed their hypocrisy.
“To CAN, this is a surprising shameless, unveiled criminal support for evil.CAN therefore, has no apology over what comment it has made on the religious cleansing in Southern Kaduna and other places in the country” it said .
With their position, CAN said it was obvious that the Imams were part of the evil network desperately trying to decimate the Christian population of Southern Kaduna and the taking over of their lands by Islamists herdsmen terrorists.
“These are the Muslim clerics that encourage and inspire the jihad carried out by their foot soldiers.
These Imams are very sad that we have refused to keep silent as we are speaking up to government and telling the world the devilish plot against the Christian community in Southern Kaduna and other affected areas.
While those they inspired through their wicked sermons to kill and conquer new territories for Islam are carrying out their instructions, they are now intimidating the victims with Governor El-Rufai infamous position of “call for self-defense is hate speech.”It said
The Council had on Monday at a press conference in Kaduna called for the arrest of CAN President, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, the Senator Representing Southern Kaduna, DSenator Danjuma Laah, the President of Southern Kaduna Peoples Union, SOKAPU, Dr. Solomom Musa, Rev. Zechariah Gado, Hon. Sunday Marshal, Dr. Danfulani, Rev. Dr. Musa Asake.
It alleged that the CAN leaders had made comments that stoked the ongoing killings in Southern Kaduna.
Reverend Asake in the statement lamented that while the killings of children, women, aged and the most defenseless of Southern Kaduna natives and the destruction of entire communities was at its peak, no one knew that a group called Council of Imams and Ulama existed in Kaduna state.
He added that when Church leaders under the banner of CAN kept praying for Southern Kaduna and other affected areas in the country, visiting traumatized communities and softly calling on government to do the needful, the Council of Imams was silent and invisible.
“If indeed, this Council of Muslim clerics claim to preach peace, tolerance and respect for human lives, we would expect them to have come out to call the rampaging Muslims herdsmen to order; condole the victims and join in the process of looking for a lasting solution, but mum was their response.
You will recalled that on the 16th of August, 2016, a chieftain of Kaduna state Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, the well-known Dr.Haruna Usman, in a well-publicized reaction to the mindless killings by the terrorists, said that the sacking of Ninte, and other villages, in Jema’aLocal Government, was in response to the killing of a Fulani ardo in Ninte. He spoke authoritatively as one in the knowledge of the massacre.
In another Press Conference in Kadunaon the 7th of November, 2016 Jema’a Foundation, Miyetti Allah and Mobgal Fulbe Development Association confirmed that Fulani and Hausa Muslims have been behind the ethnic cleansing and destruction of villages and houses of worship in Southern Kaduna.
They claimed they had to do this to entrench their rights to practice Islam, alleging they were being marginalized in Southern Kaduna. Those who addressed the press were Abdullahi Hassan Mohammed, Ahmad M. Yandeh and Abdulhamid Musa.Again, on the 31st of December, 2016, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, the Assistant National Secretary of Miyetti Allah also echoed the same position that the Fulani were carrying out reprisal killings.
But, the most troublesome revelation was that of Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State, has re-affirmed that he knows the killers of Southern Kaduna Christians and has traced some of them to some African Counties and paid them sums of money to stop the pogrom.
In view of this glaring confession by all these Fulani men, is it not reprehensible, distasteful and vile that the Council of Imams and Ulama Kaduna state did not call for the arrest of these people who are in conspiracy with the murderers?” He said