The Wusasa Bishop of the Anglican Church in Northern Nigeria, Rt.Rev Ali Buba Lamido, has blasted the Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor-led Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) for alleging that 90 percent of politicians in the north are members of the militant Boko Haram group.

Bishop Buba, who signed a press release sent to SaharaReporters’s New York office by Amos Ibrahim, a warden of the diocese, said that CAN is being used to champion interests that are in no way advancing the core mission of Christianity.

Referring to the press statement credited to Mr. Sunny Oibe, the spokesperson of CAN for the 19 Northern States of Nigeria in the aftermath of the recent bombing in Kano, the Bishop joined in condemning the unnecessary killing of innocent Nigerians, which he described as barbaric and an act of savagery.  

“We have had enough of destruction in the North and we should be looking for ways to get of this quagmire,” he said.  “I agree that the government must change its tactics in order to put a stop to this bestial cruelty in our land.   I pray God to comfort those who lost their loved ones.

Having said that, he dismissed the statements made by Mr. Oibe as not only highly-creative conjecture, but also libelous and capable of whipping up the base and bestial emotions of religious faithful towards premeditated and surreptitious reprisals.

“The manner in which Mr. Sunny spoke to the press does not portray him as a mature Christian leader.  It came to me as a rude shock that a Christian leader could make serious and despicable allegations. His vituperations and invectives are cheap and infra dig. There is no way Christians in the “core north” will paint such apparitions of Armageddon with such words that brook no decorum. I am surprised how CAN, Northern States will come out with such a totally misguiding notion or even allow such representation.”

He wondered how a Christian leader could come up with the conjecture that 90% of the politicians in northern Nigeria are either members or sponsors of Boko Haram, questioning how he arrived at the statistics.

“Are Christian politicians in the North also in Boko Haram? Will he be willing to vouchsafe the names of these Boko Haram members and sponsors to the President who still feels that Boko Haram members are ghosts? I feel some of these statements are reckless.

“Mr. Sunny threw decorum to the wind when he called for the intervention of the International Community to deal with “these animals once and for all”. Some of us who are Christian leaders in the North are embarrassed by this egregious vulgarity displayed by Mr. Sunny Oibe. He conveniently forgot that no enduring edifice can be built on the foundation of rot, artifice and chicanery. He was probably speaking for himself and not for Christians in the north who desire peacefully co-existence with our brothers and sisters.”

Drawing particular attention to Oibe’s claim that the latest attack has exposed the hypocrisy of the people calling for amnesty for Boko Harram members, the Bishop asked, “What does Mr. Sunny understand by Amnesty?  Is he saying that the 90% politicians in the “core north” are really hypocrites? Will Christian politicians and Spiritual leaders in the “Core north” turn against themselves and their region?”

He described the statement as the greatest disservice to logic and common sense, adding that people who do not know the north to be quiet on issues they are not sure of.  “If they cannot proffer positive solutions to our problems, they should stop inciting and causing further injuries to all people.  Mr. Sunny should know that the call for Amnesty was not only by Muslim politicians, but also by mature Christians from the core north,” he pointed out.

“For the records, both Christian and Muslim leaders in the North are unanimous on Amnesty to Boko Haram,” Bishop Lamido said, adding that the position was arrived at with the understanding that it will bring a permanent solution to the insurgency which has almost brought all of the North to a complete stand still.

He said that people in the North are determined to overcome the insurgency and are looking for men and women who are ready to work with them to achieve it.

“It is either you partner with us or allow us do it. Please we could do without people inciting groups to take up arms against one another.  I strongly feel there is need to overhaul CAN to make it achieve its purpose, otherwise it will continue to cause more problems than solutions.”

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