President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Reverend Dr ‘Supo Ayokunle has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to forget re-election in 2019, if the incessant killings by herdsmen, as well as general insecurity in the country is not urgently addressed.
Ayokunle stated this on Sunday, when he joined the Pastor of numberOritamefa Baptist Church, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, Reverend Dr Remi Awopegba, and other clerics and church members as they marched with placards, in response to the directive by the umbrella body of Christians in Nigeria, CAN, to hold peaceful protests within the premises of their churches.
The President, however, called on Christians and Nigerians in general, to obtain their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) ahead of next year’s general election.
Recall that had urged Christian faithful to stage national protest against the unending killings and bloodshed in the country.
He said: “Christians, all over the country, have gathered in unity to say no to bloodshed in Nigeria. Since 2009, bloodshed has continued, and administration after administration has been promising and assuring us not to fear, telling us to go about our various businesses, telling us they are on top of the situation, but we have seen that they are not on top of it. Bloodshed has continued.”
“It used to be just Boko Haram, but now, herdsmen, especially the Fulani people, have joined them, and they have been killing people and decimating communities. Now, they have concentrated on Christian communities – the Middle Belt – which have a majority of Christians. They have been killing and maiming, and to cap it all, in the past week, they murdered two priests and also killed people who went to worship. If we are not safe inside the house of God, where again do they expect us to be safe? And the Inspector General of Police is doing nothing.”
“We have always heard of unknown gunmen. When will these unknown gunmen become known? Are they not humans? What of the intelligence service of the security agencies? Why are they inept? Instead of recovering guns from murderous herdsmen, they are asking people licensed to own guns to submit their guns? What kind of security approach is that? It’s questionable and shows sign of complicity. We have lost faith in the security agencies and all security chiefs must be sacked. If bloodshed continues, this administration should forget about 2019. We cannot continue like this. Enough is enough.”
“It is time to use our votes to say no to a government that cannot protect the citizens. I’ll advise citizens to be up and doing, be circumspect, and get their PVCs and be ready to vote out a government that cannot protect them. Whether Buhari is willing to re-contest or not is not my problem. My problem is that he cannot continue to be there while bloodshed continues; while herdsmen continue to decimate communities, and none of the perpetrators are brought to book. How many of them have you heard of being brought to book?”.
Also speaking, Reverend Awopegba, called on Christians in governance to live up to their faith by upholding righteousness.
Awopegba, however, urged Christians to be law abiding, just as he encouraged security operatives to step up efforts at ensuring the security of lives and property.