President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, has expressed strong worry over the spate of Boko Haram attacks in the country, calling on leaders at all levels to engage in meaningful intra-and-inter dialogue in order to stop the ongoing senseless killings.
Oritsejafor gave the warning friday in Abuja at the retreat of the National Christian Elders Forum in Abuja, where he made it clear, that enough is enough.
The CAN president noted that the country needed peace to make progress, lamenting that the devastation that religious extremists had caused in some parts of the nation would take years to rebuild.
“Therefore, I wish to use this medium to call upon religious leaders, traditional rulers, as well as political leaders in the nation to come forward, not only to condemn these unwarranted attacks on Nigerian citizens but also to engage in meaningful intra and inter dialogue to put an end to these senseless killings. While our faith may differ, we remain members of the same family.
“We are first and foremost Nigerians before we can be classified by gender or by religion. It is not right that brothers should be killing brothers because they choose to worship God differently. It is not right.
“Those who are behind these reckless and senseless killings of Nigerian citizens should desist, if they truly fear God. While other nations are marching forward, Nigeria cannot be marching backwards! Enough is enough.” he said.
Oritsejafor pointed out that in as much as religious extremists had sorely provoked the church, Christians would not tag any religion in Nigeria evil.
He also advised Nigerians, especially the political class, against engaging in predetermined stand on election results, saying such act contravenes the principle of democracy.
Oritsejafor charged politicians to do the right thing to protect the oneness of the country, stating that, Nigerians should be allowed to associate with political parties of their choice without victimisation.
“It is very terrible, from certain parts of the north, there are people who are even afraid to identify with some candidates. Their fear is that they will be victimised. I think this kind of atmosphere is wrong. If this is a democracy, everyone should be allowed to do whatever they feel is right in their hearts, freely.
“Certain people have set the stage for such thinking, which is wrong. If this is a democracy, then we should not predetermine anything,” he stated.