Kaduna Archbishop: Nigeria at War with Fanatics, Kidnappers, Terrorists
Says Christians, Muslims not at war Warns political leaders against unguided statements
The Catholic Archbishop of Kaduna State, Most Rev. Matthew Ndagoso yesterday condemned the rising activi- ties of criminal elements in the country, especially in the Northern, noting that Nigeria “is at war with fanatics, kidnappers, and terrorists.”
Ndagoso, also, warned all political leaders in Kaduna State against unguided and disrespectful statements, which according to him, portrayed them as sectional and biased leaders.
He gave the warning at the funeral service of the Agom Adara, Mr. Raphael Maiwada held at St. John’s Catholic Church, Kachia, Kaduna yesterday, lamenting that criminals “are killing and maiming innocent Nigerians and making everywhere unsafe for citizens.”
The traditional ruler, who was abducted on October 19 by gunmen on his way from Kaduna to his palace in Kachia, was later killed by the kidnappers on October 26, after a N10 million ransoms was said to have been paid to them.
At funeral service yesterday, Ndagoso observed that the challenges facing Nigeria, particularly the North, was due to the increasing activities of fanatics, kidnappers and terrorists, who had practically made everywhere insecure and unsafe.
He said, “Let me reiterate once again that the challenge we have at hand in Nigeria, especially in the northern part, is not a war between Christians and Muslims. No. Christians and Muslims are not at war with each other.
“Our country, however, is at war with fanatics, kidnappers, terrorists and opportunists who are criminals in every sense of the word, killing and maiming innocent Nigerians regardless of religion, ethnicity and political leanings.”
He called on the federal government “to tackle the security problems across the country by investing more in security in the security sector. Without security that will enable the citizenry to move around freely to conduct their daily businesses, the roads, railways, hospitals, schools etc that are built will become useless.
On this note, the cleric explained that those charged with the constitutional duty of protecting and securing lives and property should go after the criminal elements.
Recalling the bloody violence that erupted in Kaduna, Ndagoso commended security agents in the state for their quick and prompt
intervention on October 21 and Friday morning of October 26 when Kaduna became tense following the abduction and the killing of the traditional ruler.
He noted, “If not for that quick intervention, the consequences for all of us would have been better imagined. We are not oblivious of the enormous challenges facing them in these very difficult and trying moments. We know that very often they put their lives on the line to make us safe. This said, I believe that like everything else in life there is always room for improvement.
The cleric urged security agents “to work harder, especially in the area of intelligence gathering, sharing and surveillance. There is much left to be desired in this regards.”