Should inflammatory comments from religious groups and individuals not be curbed, the peace efforts being put in place by government in Southern Kaduna could be in jeopardy.
This was the thought of Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III as codified in a statement he issued.
The Islamic leader also called on Muslims all over the country to intensify prayers for the restoration of peace and security in the geo-political zone.
The Sultan’s statement issued by JNI’s Secretary General, Dr. Khalid Abubakar Aliyu, lamented what he described as “ugly developments of accusations and counter-accusations from religious leaders,” which he said can lead to un-ending conflict.
The statement read in parts: “The National Headquarters of Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) painstakingly notes with concern, the unfortunate sectarian violence which bedevilled Southern Kaduna for quite sometime now and it has monitored events relating to the unfortunate serial killings, as they unfolded.
“More worrisome was the ineptitude and pettiness from some religious leaders, and individuals with sinister motives and political undertones alongside intent to foment trouble, and imbalance reportage. While at some quarters, unguarded utterances full of exaggerations, beating the drums of war were the order of the day.
“Planting the seed of discord, acrimony, hate speech and unguarded statements, such as; “religious cleansing’’,” systematic genocide through the instrumentality of Islamic fundamentalists…”, “therefore, all Christians are to dress in mourning attire of black clothes or dresses… on January 8, 2017”, “Christians should defend themselves”, and exaggeration of figures of casualties horrendously, etc, are obviously factors that exasperated the crisis.
“Thank God, security agencies considered the alleged given figures as mere exaggerations.
“Additionally, a formidable Christian group rejected the call of dressing in mourning attire of black clothes.
“However, JNI is really worried with these aforementioned and ugly developments of accusations and counter accusations from religious leaders, which could lead to an un-ending conflict. Nonetheless, as always, we reiterate that human life is sacred and should be treated so.
Spread across Kaura, Sanga, Jama’a and Kauru Local Government Areas where there had been persistent attacks on communities by gunmen believed to be Fulani herdsmen,” the statement added.