-News/Comments, November 27, 2020
“People think North is safe but that assumption is not true. In fact, it’s the worst place to be in this country because bandits go around in the villages, households and markets with their AK 47 and nobody is challenging them” This was the outburst of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, on Thursday during the week when the fourth quarterly meeting of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council was held in Abuja with a theme: Questioning for peace in the challenges of insecurity and COVID-19’
The Sultan however stated that, North’s security network has collapsed totally, and the region has become a safe haven where they operate in broad day light without security intervention. His words “Security situation in Northern Nigeria has assumed a worrisome situation. Few weeks ago, over 76 persons were killed in a community in Sokoto in a day. I was there with the governor to commiserate with the affected community. Unfortunately, you don’t hear these stories in the media because it’s in the North. We have accepted the fact that the North does not have strong media to report the atrocities of these bandits”
“People think North is safe but that assumption is not true. In fact, it’s the worst place to be in this country because bandits go around in the villages, households and markets with their AK 47 and nobody is challenging them. They stop at the market, buy things, pay and collect change, with their weapons openly displayed. These are facts I know because I am at the centre of it”.
“I am not only a traditional ruler, I am also a religious leader. So, I am in a better place to tell the story. I can speak for the North in this regard because I am fully aware of the security challenges there. We have to sincerely and seriously find solutions to the problem, otherwise, we will find ourselves soon, in a situation where we would lose sleep because of insecurity.”
On his part, His Eminence, Rev. Dr. Ignatius Kaigama, Catholic Archbishop of Abuja Diocese noted that, religious leaders must work in synergy with operational mode rather than in disguised system. His words “We Christians and Muslims must avoid imposing our religious views on others or denying them public amenities, jobs or influential positions because they don’t belong to our faith.
“Merit, not the vigour of our religious piety or affiliation should determine all we do or get in this country. We should not unjustly or corruptly deprive others of their rights, not to talk of wounding or killing anyone for economic or partisan political interests or because of blind religious zeal. “It is preposterous that Nigerians clamouring for their rights and privileges from government would turn their anger on religious institutions by attacking Churches and Mosques, instigating Christians and Muslims to turn against one another or to destroy public amenities and infrastructure”
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