by Tolu Omoyeni
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) is unhappy with the way Christians in the Nigeria are maltreated and sidestepped in the larger scheme of things. The recent provocation comes after the much talked about visit of US Secretary of State, Mr John Kerry to Nigeria.
CAN believes the visit and all its concerns were only in the favour of Muslims and Northern Nigeria. According to CAN, Mr Kerry is fuelling ethnic and religious divisions in the country. To put things in perspective, here’s a list of all of CAN’s recent grievances:
- Mr John Kerry is number one on the list of enemies: On Mr Kerry’s to-do-in-Nigeria 2016 list, Christians were omitted and the association of Christians in the country are not taking it lightly with the man. The president of the association, Mr Supo Ayokunle expressed the collective dissatisfaction in an interview with journalists. He said the actions of Mr Kerry are “personal, discriminatory and divisive”. During his two-day visit, the US secretary of state paid a visit to the palace of the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar III, the State House and subsequently met with Northern governors. Christians, the South and southern governors were clearly boycotted. CAN accused Mr Kerry of being selective and said his visit was to the North and not Nigeria.
- Mr Joe Chinakwe’s unlawful arrest and detention: CAN is of the opinion that the rights of the man who named his dog “Buhari” have been trampled upon. According to Mr Ayokunle, the man has not committed a criminal offence and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) should wade into the matter to make sure Mr Chinakwe does not continue to suffer.
- President Buhari’s administration is anti-Christian: According to CAN, there haven’t been any arrests or prosecution of those involved in the killings of Christians in the North. A Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) pastor was slain in Abuja, an ECWA pastor was killed on his farm in Nasarawa, a Catholic church in Niger state was burnt down by Muslims because they held a service on Friday. So far, the government has given excuses and no assailant has been brought to book yet. CAN refers to it as “a selective persecution of Christians by the DSS and the Nigerian Police.
- Obama’s administration is in support of the APC: There have been speculations that President Obama’s administration opened supported the APC in the 2015 elections but CAN says the actions of Mr John Kerry during his visit have now confirmed those claims. The US government might be working with President Buhari to islamize Nigeria and one of the aims of Mr John Kerry’s visit is to cement that deal. CAN is of the opinion that “there is a siege on Christians”.