FOLLOWING the murder of priests and worshippers of St. Ignatius Catholic Church in Ayar Mbalom, Gwer East Local Government Area of Benue State, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has called on Christians to embark on a nationwide protest.
In a statement made available to Nigerian Tribune and signed by Pastor Adebayo Oladeji,
Special Assistant, (Media and Communications) to the CAN President, Reverend Dr Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, on Wednesday, CAN declare Sunday, April 29, 2018, as a National Day of Protest, against what it described as “unending Killings in the country.”
The statement read: “In its swift reaction to the killing of two priests and 17 worshippers of St. Ignatius Catholic Church, Mbalom, Gwer East LGA of Benue State, CAN has declared Sunday, April 29, 2018, as a National Day of Protest against unending killings in the country.
“It also dedicates the same day for prayers for the freedom of Leah Sharibu, the remaining Chibok girls, and others still in the captivity of Boko Haram. We are already at a breaking point and a state of anomie is almost here.
“CAN urges Christians in Nigeria to hold a peaceful protest on Sunday, in the premises of their churches asking the Federal Government and security agencies to stop the unending killings and bloodshed in the country. Christians are to carry placards with inscriptions meant to address issues about sustained killings, attacks and destruction of their property in Nigeria.
“The inscriptions on placards could read: ‘Enough of Bloodshed in Nigeria;’ ‘Enough of Unlawful Killings in the Country;’ ‘FG, Release Leah Sharibu from Bondage;’ ‘FG, Stop Herdsmen Killings;’ ‘CAN rejects FG’s poor handling of insecurity,’ among others.
The government should be called upon to perform their constitutional responsibility of protecting citizens now. No excuse should be given for this wicked act again and perpetrators must be brought to book now.”
The association also appealed to the Federal Government to “mount different effective plans aimed towards disarming herdsmen across the northern states and in communities where they have been wreaking havoc.”
Calling on Christians to ensure active participation in the forthcoming elections, CAN urged security agencies to do the needful to prevent the country from “descending into chaos and a state of lawlessness,” and also encouraged all citizens to continue to pray for peace, unity and families of victims of insurgency, armed herdsmen and other criminal elements.
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