• MASSOB urges CAN to stop praying for nation
• Warns against proliferation of ‘Yoruba churches’ in S’ East
• Group chides IPOB for comment on Jonathan
The Sultan of Sokoto and President General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, yesterday described the agitations in the country as symptoms of rot in the polity that could be checked by dialogue.
The monarch who spoke when Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, paid him Eid-el-Fitri homage lamented that many people committed a lot of atrocities in the past and got away with them.
According to him, this accounted for the inadequacy of good governance now weighing down the country. The Islamic leader, who pointed out that “no matter how dirty the hand is, we cannot cut it and throw it away”, reiterated the need to employ dialogue in resolving all the misunderstandings and problems in the country. Nigerians, he appealed, should sit down together and brainstorm, look at what went wrong and retrace their steps so that the country could move forward. He also appealed to statesmen whom he said were not in short supply in the nation to work in this direction by championing the dialogue.
‘’We should not allow sentiments to rule our heads. Nigeria is our only country and we have no any other nation than this,” he said. He also commended the developmental strides of Governor Wike in Rivers State, as well as his existing relationship with the Muslim community there.
Earlier, Wike said the people and government of Rivers State believed in the indissolubility of Nigeria. According to him, there are better ways of resolving the agitations and problems of the country other than breaking up.
But the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) yesterday advised the south east chapters of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) to stop their prayers for Nigeria, claiming that praying for Nigeria connotes supporting the marginalisation of the Igbo.
In a statement by its leader, Comrade Uche Madu which was made available to journalists in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, MASSOB further demanded that the weekly prayers offered in churches every Sunday for Nigeria should stop now “because the God of Bible can never answer prayers that oppose his divine will.”
The group said that praying for the continued existence of Nigeria simply means praying for unprovoked killing and oppression of Christians, mostly the Igbo in the country.
According to Madu, the prayers also mean the continuity of the agenda of the Hausa-Fulani to impose Islamic religion and to spiritually energise the Islamic fundamentalists, including the Fulani herdsmen, to continue their killing of Christians in Nigeria.
“MASSOB wants the Igbo Christian leaders in Catholic, Anglican, Methodist, Presbyterian churches and all pentecostal churches in Biafra land to see the impending doom and spiritual danger of continuous prayers for Nigeria.
“MASSOB also warns on the proliferation of Yoruba churches in Biafraland. MASSOB is not happy that Yoruba church leaders are using Igboland as a fertile land for economic adventures through the plantation of churches owned by them. To our amazement, these churches which include Mountain of Fire and Miracles, Redeemed Christians Church of God, Christ Embassy, Winners Chapel do not appoint Igbo man as a pastor in charge even in Igbo land.
“The leadership of these churches in Igbo remote villages also appoints their Yoruba kinsmen as local presiding pastors. All their states, zonal, regional and provincial pastors and superintendents are Yoruba posted to Biafraland to represent the monetary interest of their general overseers. MASSOB warns these Yoruba church leaders to stop this religious colonialism against the people of Biafra now,” the group said.
Meanwhile, the Ogbia Brotherhood Youth Council (OBYC) on Monday took a swipe at the Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, for allegedly saying former President Goodluck Jonathan was weak and incompetent.
In a statement by its National President, Dr. Laguo Gilbert, the group described Kanu’s statements as most unfortunate and therefore advised the public to disregard them.
“Such radical statements remain one of the reasons the IPOB agitation lacks its required substance. The OBYC, however, advises Kanu to learn from the mistakes made by the group in the past and its predecessor, as this will be necessary to implement its vision,” the statement said.
“Bringing former President Jonathan into its issues in such a disrespectful manner will neither help nor give credence to MASSOB’s rancour. OBYC therefore warns Kanu to desist forthwith from linking a man of honour like Jonathan to his directionless agitation,” the statement added.
The IPOB leader had reportedly chided the former president for not completing the East-West road and for allegedly doing nothing for his people. “I love Yar’Adua and Shehu Shagari, Patience Jonathan would have made a better President than Goodluck,” Kanu had said.