The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Kaduna State chapter on Sunday staged peaceful protest through prayers against killings of a student, Miss Deborah Samuel and the attacks on a Catholic Church where Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah is in charge.
Fielding questions from Reporters shortly after the prayer session, Vice Chairman, Kaduna State chapter of CAN, Rev. Father Chris Annger, blamed politicians and religious extremists for the attacks.
“A situation where individuals will take laws into their hands to waste life that’s given by God previously, is what the Kaduna State chapter of the CAN is gathered here to say it’s not acceptable; it’s not right and should be condemned by every right thinking Nigerians on the face of the Earth. That is why we are here.
Commenting on the attack on a Catholic Church in Sokoto and the safety of Bishop Kukah, CAN Vice Chairman said, “When we learnt that a Catholic church is attacked in Sokoto, it’s very clear that that attack was on Bishop Matthew Kukah because he’s the one who’s like a voice to the voiceless in this country.
“He’s speaking truth to power everyday. So that attack was directly or indirectly on him. So people coming out to condemn him or his speech and things like that, probably, you will know that it’s something that has been conceived. Its just giving birth on account of this incident otherwise it is something that people have within themselves about Kukah because of the way and the manner he has been approaching issues in the country.
“So the attack on the church was to a large extent, an attack on Bishop Kukah. We are calling on the Nigeria government to charge those in charge of carrying guns or agencies responsible for taking care of us, to be up and doing and protect the life of Kukah and every believer as well as every Nigerian to be protected from this menace. It’s unacceptable.
On the alleged another blasphemy in Bauchi, Father Annger said, “It is serious but it’s one of the things when a government that’s not upright in it’s position to securing the state. These are the things that come up. In the first place, it like a religious crisis after…after that we have issue of Boko Haram and after that we have issues of banditry which we are presently struggling with. In every state there is no safety on our roads, everywhere.
“To travel from Kaduna to Abuja or any part of he country, is a challenging thing. Now, we have issue of killing in the name of blasphemy. We don’t know whether its another strategy to eliminate believers in Christ because it’s worrisome.
“More worrisome because of the fact that people who ordinarily that would have commented on issues like these are silence. The government is not talking or doing enough to curtail this menace. Its quite challenging. So, we don’t know if it’s another strategy.
“But I want to believe that in the same way that other strategies failed, this one will fail because nobody has the right to take life in the name of anything. We have a law to be followed by every individual who’s part of this nation and that has to be respected.
“We used to live harmoniously in the past but politics has set in. So, sometimes politics can take issues to some levels. We have politicians that can use anything for their gains and we have religious extremists that they want to, in the name of their God, they want to kill. Sometimes, I began to wonder.
“I have a God that I have faith and confidence in that I feel He protects me. He leads me and direct me and I know that I am limited. I cannot protect Him and fight for Him but we have people that are proud to say that they are fighting for their God.
“You have killed somebody in the name of God but when arrested people are protesting so that you can be release. They don’t want you to be killed in the name of the same God that you kill for. What an irony. So politics can set in and religious extremists too can bring in crisis”.
Father Annger explained, “We are people of God to thank God for life and to thank God for what has recently happened in Sokoto, Deborah Samuel, who was gruesomely killed by Islamic extremist on account of Blasphemy.
“So, we are here to first pray for survival of those who are alive and also let the world know that it’s not the best way to go by killing because we are living in a country where there are rules as constitution. I think as a patriotic Nigerians, we have what is guiding us that has to be respected.”