by Dolapo Adelana
The Christian Association of Nigeria has demanded that the Department of State Services (DSS) should tender a written apology publicly to four members of its Board of Trustees.
The security agency had arrested and detained a former Chief of General Staff, Lt.-Gen. Joshua Dogonyaro (retd.), representing TEKAN/ECWA chapter of CAN; a retired High Court Judge, Justice Kalajine Anigbogu, representing the Christian Council of Nigeria; Mrs. Osaretin Demuren, representing the Organisation of African Instituted Churches, and a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Tunde Lemo, representing the Christian Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria and Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria.
The Director of Legal and Public Affairs, CAN, Kwamkur Samuel, in a protest letter to the DG of DSS, obtained on Sunday, in Abuja, said the DSS should be cautious in the way it related to the ‘Body of Christ’ as its allegations against the association and the four individuals were ‘vexatious’
CAN said, “The DSS should be more circumspect in dealing with the Body of Christ in Nigeria, if not for any other reason, but to ensure and promote the confidence of the average Nigerian Christian in the government of the day.
“Regrettably, despite assurances from your operatives, led by the Director of Operations, who said that the invitation was only to interact with these distinguished Nigerian Christians and to seek their opinion and advice on how to address the lingering ethno-religious crises in Nigeria, it turned out that the main reason behind the invitation was your interest in the video jingle produced by CAN, with the slogan, ‘I CAN support’, to raise funds for the support of the church and distressed Christians in Nigeria.
“Having considered the negative effect of your interrogation ‘under caution’ of the distinguished members of the Board of Trustees of the CAN Trust Fund on the Christian community in Nigeria, the leadership of CAN, hereby, demands that a written public apology be tendered to these distinguished Nigerians.
“It was, therefore, shocking to hear from your establishment that those materials were made to incite violence in response to the attempted annihilation of the church in Southern Kaduna. With all due respect, such an analysis and conclusion were vexatious and very wrong.”