|Gyang Bere, Jos
Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in northern Nigeria, Rev. Yakubu Pam, has urged Northern governors to issue Certificates of Occupancy to churches operating in the region.
He said Christians in the North deserve government’s protection for freedom of worship and kicked against any form of marginalisation of Christians in the region.
Rev. Pam disclosed this on Saturday in Jos during a press briefing after his re-election as Northern CAN Chairman in Kaduna State and applauded Christian leaders and his exco for renewing his mandate for another period of three years.
“We will continue to raise the issues that are still not resolved particularly the persecution of Christians regarding their rights to worship here in northern Nigeria. We have raised this issue previously that we need the right to worship just like other Christians in the southern part of this country.
“Christians should not be denied Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) for the building of churches and anything that has to do with Christian faith. We also need the freedom of citizenship and protection because no matter how little a crisis is when it erupts, it turns into the destruction of churches, Christian lives and properties in the North.”
He said Christians need liberty to citizenship since they are part of Nigerians and shouldn’t be intimidated in their houses.
Rev. Pam urged the Federal government to expedite action and ensure the release of other Chibok girls and Leah Shariubu, just as Zainab Aliyu, a Nigerian lady who was detained by Saudi Arabian authorities over drug-related issues was released with the intervention of the president.
“We need to have the liberty to citizenship; we are parts of Nigeria; we are citizens of Nigeria; we shouldn’t be intimidated in our houses and in our country. The authorities should continue to look into our issues.
“We will continue to talk about the release of the remaining abducted Chibok girls and Leah Shariubu. Look at Zainab Aliyu who was released recently, his parents were sad and mourning, and we are pleading with the Federal government and the president to ensure that these girls regain their freedom.”
Rev. Pam expressed worry over the escalation of farmers-herders clashes in some parts of northern states and the act of criminality in Zamfara and some other states of the North.
He called on government to also tackle the prevailing issues of kidnapping for ransom which is overwhelming the country.
Rev. Pam urged northern governors to leave pleasure aside and tackle unemployment and poverty that have gained basis in the region, saying with peace and security, investors will surely come to the North.