NCEF: No denial from ‘Christian leaders’ yet?
So none of the so called National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) who purportedly met in Abuja several days ago could disown what they said? Many newspapers said among those who attended the unpatriotic meeting included Theophilus Danjuma (of all people), Dogonyaro, Zamani Lekwot and some and other elements. This is shocking but not surprising indeed!
As I read what I called naïve and emotionally undeveloped outcome of the NCEF in the Daily Trust on Saturday Newspaper of 15th July 2017, I was shocked, waiting anxiously for the next edition of the paper and others to see a rebuttal but none came till date.
Initially I did not intend to comment on the issue, for it was not worth of attracting any attention; but people sent me texts messages urging me to say something.
These so-called elders beset President Muhammadu Buhari vehemently. In fact, I was perplexed when I read that the likes our former defence minister, a hitherto wellrespected personage in this country, and who participated actively in keeping this country one and united during the Civil War, is now engulfed and buried in myopic religious sentiments.
Some of these elements knew PMB very well, for he was their colleague at a time. As such they supposed to defend in his onerous task of keeping Nigeria one, and at most advise him genuinely if they felt something is missing somewhere in this trying moment of our nationhood; but they threw caution to the wind and simply assailed him out of jealousy and antipathy as their utterances suggested.
I have no iota of doubt that, these lots do not represent the majority of our Christian brethren in the country. Likewise, any peace loving Nigerian will keep a distance from them.
Their discussions in the meeting were full of scaring and startling words such as ‘ethnic crisis,’ ‘Jihadist,’ ‘armed conflict,’ ‘herdsmen/farmers crises,’ ‘conflagrate in war,’ and so on. May Almighty Allah save Nigeria from such bywords. May He protect patriotic Nigerians from listening to any local champion who showcase himself as warlord in order to achieve cheap popularity.
We should emulate people like our Nationalist Veteran General Yakubu. History is witness to the role played by some of these NCEF members in Zangon Kataf crisis, Tafawa Balewa in Bauchi, and murderous Jos killings during the last regime and resent vicious and barbaric annihilation in Mambila in Taraba State.
These lots shamelessly blamed the Buhari administration for the current ethnic crisis and agitation for secession in Nigeria; alluding that Buhari was the one who called Nnamdi Kanu to come to the country with two passports and start agitating for Biafra, and he was the one who incited others to attack Fulani on the Mambila Plateau; saying extremists were pushing a jihadist agenda.
Our friends asserted that a needless armed conflict may occur if the situation is not well managed. Who will manage the situation when some so called leaders are urging their followers to kill innocent people at Mambila as they did in Zangon Kataf in the past? They called for immediate nullification of appointments that give undue advantage to a section of the country! Who is favoured in current appointments?
They alluded that if PMB’s government is not willing to offer them positions and take them out of irrelevance and isolation, they may resort to instigation and violence. They counted many agitations which are happening presently. They should censure themselves before censuring others; charity begins at home.
The Christian self-appointed elders asked Nigerians to be alert and focus on the reality of what is actually occurring in our country Nigeria. They said real democracy as national ideology and Sharia as usurping ideology are responsible for the crisis unfolding in Nigeria.
They stated further that Nigeria is in the throes and paroxysm of jihad but since Buhari came to power, has he done anything or said any word which indicated Sharia? Has he called any person to embrace Islam? Has he formed any group to embark on Jihad? Please tell us the actions committed by Buhari or by his administration which indicated application of Sharia.
They called for the return of religious studies in schools which was an allusion to Christian Religious Knowledge (C.R.K.). Has PMB’s government at any time removed religious studies in our schools? They alleged the removal of the study of (CRK) from the basic education curriculum. Here, if they are indirectly referring to the address of the Minister of Education at the 61st National Council on Education (NCE) Conference held at the Ladi Kwali Hall of Sheraton Hotel Abuja in 2016 does not hold water.
This is simply what he said: “That Christian Religious Studies (C.R.S.) and Islamic Studies (I.S.) become core and compulsory subject for all Christian and Muslim learners respectively from Basic to Senior Secondary School Levels”.
Please what is wrong here? Where is the Islamization of the country in this context? I am very certain they cannot be Christians more than right honourable John Onaiyekan, the patriotic and nationalist, for he already dismissed such deleterious, malevolent and malicious allegations.
They should do justice to PMB and his administration and must not be carried away by injustice and parochialism. If we want permanent and everlasting peace to be established in this great country, such people should be called to order. Why don’t they emulate and follow in footsteps the Arewa Elders who carry everybody along with them. They welcome and cherish all Nigerians irrespective of their religious beliefs.
Whether some people like it or not, Buhari has already established a record which no one can ever beat or break it easily in this country. All Nigerians attests to his incorruptibility, honesty, uprightness and adherence to rectitude. PMB’s virtues are crystal clear. No amount of hatred and hate speech or aversion can erode them. It suffices that the international community including IMF acclaimed and approbated him.
To me, the prime aim and objective of this group is to shatter and scatter the north along religious line, so that they could be recognized and come out from the oblivion they are in. Nigeria in general and the North in particular will remain one and united forever.
My countrymen, please let us give our full support and breathing space to our Acting President to do his laudable and commendable job he is currently doing. We thank him very much, for he is a man of ethics and trust.
They should do justice to PMB and his administration and must not be carried away by injustice and parochialism. If we want permanent and everlasting peace to be established in this great country, such people should be called to order. Why don’t they emulate and follow in footsteps the Arewa Elders who carry everybody along with them. They welcome and cherish all Nigerians irrespective of their religious beliefs
Prof. Nguru is the CEO of Nigeria Arabic Village, Ngala, Borno State.