ultan of Sokoto under fire over comment about Christians in Nigeria

The Nigerian Christian Graduate Fellowship (NCGF) has condemned the statement by the Sultan of Sokoto wherein he was quoted to have said that “It is a lie to say Christians are being persecuted in Nigeria.”

Recall that the Christian Association of Nigeria had recently backed the inclusion of Nigeria in United States’ list of nations where religious intolerance was going on.

A statement on Friday by Prof. Charles Adisa, National President and Mr Onyenachi Nwaegeruo, General Secretary, described the Sultan’s reaction as well as the attack on CAN as unfortunate.

The statement also noted that the Christian leadership simply expressed its support to the international community as they have realised what many Nigerians have often lamented about, especially concerning Islamic fundamentalism, government tacit support of it and its effect on Christian faith.

NCGF said: “The Sultan should have addressed the subject matter of the international opprobrium which Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen have brought to the nation. Or is his Eminence contesting that there is no religious intolerance in Nigeria? If that is the position we can say that the Sultan is being economical with the truth or is an accomplice.

“An interrogation of the subject matter shows that it is either the Sultan and the institution which he leads are in willful ignorance of the issues at stake or he has chosen to play to the gallery as government spokesman.

“The Sultan cannot fault CAN on the issue of research on effects of Islamic fundamentalism in Nigeria. We are aware that there exist quantum documentary evidence of the murderous against Nigerian Christians.

“Further, we are aware that the information at the disposal of the US which informed the decision to blacklist Nigeria is a combined effort of independent investigators and domestic observers of the nefarious activities of extremists and terrorists especially Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen.

“We are embarrassed on the double standard attitude of the sultanate, an institution that has kept mute to the serial decimation of christian communities in the North but suddenly found its voice because the government that has carried on as an appendage of the sultanate is under fire.

“May we remind his Eminence that it is ungodly that his office has never to the best of our knowledge condemned these murderous acts, even the most recent ones in Yobe state and Chibok in Borno state where Boko Haram attacked Christian communities on Christmas eve.

“Under the current government, several thousands of souls were wasted in Southern Kaduna, Benue, Plateau, Taraba and Adamawa. In 2019 alone over 1,000 people were killed in the Northcentral. Those who doubt this fact should go to Google, the records are there. There have been mass burials in those areas and no single culprit has been apprehended not to talk of prosecution.

“Instead, it is the Buhari administration that has been either justifying the killings or telling us that the criminals were coming from Libya. The President, through one of his spokesmen, Femi Adesina, once asked the people to give up their lands for their lives! This is reprehensible and unprecedented in the country.”

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