The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has condemned in strong terms the gruesome murder of a Christian college girl and 200-level student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, Deborah Samuel, by some extremist fellow students over alleged blasphemy, calling for the perpetrators to be brought to book.
According to the association, “killing for any God in the name of blasphemy is ungodly, satanic, foolish, reprehensible and totally unacceptable.”
A statement by CAN’s general secretary, Joseph Bade Daramola, said the unlawful and dastardly action of the perpetrators must not only be condemned by all right-thinking people but the security operatives must fish them out, prosecute them as it is expected of them.
The apex body of Christians in Nigeria further said it was the failure of the security agencies and the government to rise to such criminalities in the past that gave birth to terrorists and bandits.
It said as long as the State fails to bring the beasts ans criminals in the society to book, so also the society will continue to be their killing field.
The statement reads in part: “We acknowledge the swift reaction of His Eminence, Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar 111 who not only condemned the criminal and religious intolerant action but called on the security agencies to bring the perpetrators to justice.
“It is our expectation that the State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, would ensure that the matter is not swept under the carpet, as it was before.
“We also call on all teachers and preachers of religious intolerance, extremism, and terrorism to repent before the wrath of God descends on them if the State failed to bring them to book. They are agents of death amidst us.”
The Association recalled the provocative and demeaning advertisement of the Sterling Bank where the bank compared the Resurrection of Jesus Christ to “Agege Bread” recently, up till now, nobody was attacked and even the CAN leadership has accepted the apology tendered by the bank’s chief Eeecutive, Abubakar Suleiman.
“This is not a Stone Age and Nigeria is not a Banana Republic. Nigeria remains a non-religious State where no religion is supreme to the other.
“We acknowledge and commend the restraint of the Christian students of the College who refused to embrace self-help and reprisal attacks on those who murdered their colleague. It is our prayers that those vampires in religious garments will not push the country to a religious war,” the Association said.
The Association also commiserates with the family of Deborah and other bereaved.
“May God console and comfort them in Jesus Name. Thanks to many other Nigerians who condemned this heinous crime. It was quite an unfortunate development in 21st century Nigeria,” it added.
Meanwhile, Ibrahim Maqari, imam of the National Mosque Abuja, has justified the horrific murder of Deborah Samuel, blaming her for crossing the red lines of Islamic faith.
Absolving her killers, Mr Maqari hinted grave consequences awaited persons who crossed the religion’s red lines, noting that such conduct will not be tolerated.
“It should be known to everyone that we the Muslims have some red lines beyond which MUST NOT be crossed. The dignity of the Prophet (PBUH) is at the forefront of the red lines. If our grievances are not properly addressed, then we should not be criticized for addressing them ourselves,” said a statement posted on the imam’s Twitter account.
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