The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has expressed shock and disappointment over Islamic leader, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi’s profiling of military personnel.
The organization also accused President Muhammadu Buhari government of pampering the scholar and outlaws.
Gumi made a controversial comment while addressing some bandits in Tegina forest, a border town between Niger and Kaduna States.
“What I want you people to understand is, soldiers that are involved in most of the criminalities are not Muslims. You know, soldiers have Muslims and non-Muslims. The non-Muslims are the ones causing confusion just to ignite crisis”, Gumi had told the bandits.
But Joseph Daramola, CAN General Secretary, in a statement on Wednesday asked Gumi to immediately withdraw the “unpatriotic and divisive utterances”.
The scribe said anyone who holds such a view does not wish Nigeria well and doesn’t want the war against terrorism and banditry to end in victory.
“How can we ascertain the credibility of the person alleging that it was the Christian soldiers that were attacking communities and bandits? This unreasonable outburst is not only demoralizing and a plot to divide the Nigerian military into two along religious lines, it derogatorily portrays the non-Christian soldiers as being not committed to fighting criminality.”
CAN, lambasted the presidency for failing to react to the statement by Gumi “who has thrown caution to the wind”.
“Is Sheikh Gumi trying to polarise the military along the religious divides? Is he inciting the bandits against Christians? Is Gumi saying that the Muslim soldiers are on vacation in the ongoing war against terrorists, murderous herdsmen and bandits? What good will this statement do to the insecurity in the country?
“President Muhammadu Buhari’s prolonged silence is tantamount to an endorsement of Gumi’s dangerous statement. If what Gumi reportedly said was attributed to a Christian leader, the security operatives would have invited him or declared him wanted and the Presidency would have publicly condemned that Christian leader.
“We recall how Apostle Johnson Suleiman, Dr Obadiah Mailafia, Prophet Isa El-Buba and of recent, the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Dr Matthew Hassan Kukah’s statements were handled by security operatives and equally reacted to by the government. Do we truly have sacred cows in the country now?
“We are curious to know how Gumi was able to locate the whereabouts of the bandits when our security agencies are giving us the impression that they are invincible. If the terrorists can be located, what hinders the police and the military from arresting them and bringing them to book? Is anyone in government conniving with the terrorists so that this insecurity might continue?”
“Now that bandits are being pampered, money is being made available to them and highly respected politicians and religious leaders are speaking for them, criminals are being emboldened to commit their unlawful actions with impunity.”
CAN further, threw questions to the Buhari administration asking to know what truly transpired between the bandits and the federal government.
“Who truly offended these terrorists? What sin did the people they are attacking and kidnapping commit against them? Why should anybody be speaking in favour of the terrorists? Will pampering the terrorists not truly going to be around with us in the next 20 years as foretold by the immediate Chief of Army Staff?”
The Christian leadership emphasised that Nigeria’s unity was on trial and warned that if those running the country are playing the ostrich, there may be no hope of redemption.