Nigeria: 23 Clerics Killed, 200 Churches Destroyed By Bandits in Kaduna – CAN

As the Kaduna State Police Command and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) agree to work against insecurity and activities of bandits and kidnappers, the Christian community has hinted that 23 pastors/priests have been killed and 200 churches destroyed by bandits in four years.

The decision was reached at a meeting which was held at the Albaraka Baptist Church, Barnawa Kaduna at the instance of the commissioner of police, Musa Garba with the CAN leadership and pastors.

The police commissioner told the CAN leadership and over hundred pastors that criminality has no religion and whoever engages in any act of criminality should be addressed as a criminal without profiling him or her as a Christian, Muslim or by their tribes or ethnicity.

This is just as he said, security is the responsibility of all and not only that of the government, stressing that while the government takes the lead in protection of lives and property, individuals are also expected to play their parts particularly in the area of information provision.

He said the meeting was basically to strengthen the relationship between the police and religious leaders and listen to their challenges and together foster possible solutions, while expressing the commitment of the police force under his leadership to do their very best in the discharge of their duties.

The commissioner called for unity in diversity, adding that “we should all be our brothers’ keepers. “

“Always reach out to security personnel around your communities with prompt information once you identify suspicious persons,” he stressed.

Earlier, the state chairman of CAN, Rev. Dr. John Joseph Hayab, commended the police commissioner for finding time to interact with Christian clerics.

He said the church had gone through difficult times with over 23 pastors and priests killed by bandits in the state alone and over 200 churches closed due to activities of bandits in the past four years.

Rev. Hayab recounted how one Pastor (name withheld) was kidnapped on the 8th of August, 2023 before he was released, adding that according to the kidnapped pastor’s account, there are over 215 Christians abducted by the bandits and they are still there and that the bandits asked him to lead prayers for them while he was in their den.

He therefore called on the commissioner to look into these issues among many others holistically and build the confidence of the people once again.

Also, the immediate past secretary-general of the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) worldwide, Rev Yunusa Nmadu Jnr and many other pastors who spoke urged the commissioner to also consider bringing to book activities of pastors and imams who engage in hate sermons and speeches.

They called on the commissioner to look into cases of those selling hard drugs, stressing that most of the criminalities occur under the influence of hard drugs.


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