From ABDULGAFAR ALABELEWE, Kaduna
Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) yesterday took a swipe at the president of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor over his comment on the position of United States government on the Boko Haram menace, saying that the cleric was only fuelling the crisis.
ACF said in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Anthony Sani that Pastor Oritsejafor had in a widely publicized statement, sought to deny the submissions of US government that illiteracy, unemployment and inexorable demands of survival from the effects of poverty make the northern youths vulnerable and ready for recruitment into crime and social vices including terrorism of the Boko Haram genre.
According to the statement, “CAN was not happy with the US submissions precisely because it believed Boko Haram had been spawned by northern leaders in response to their failure to clinch the Presidency in 2011”.
“As far as Oritsejafor is concerned, northern leaders are bent on making the country ungovernable for President Jonathan, since it is their manifest destiny to rule Nigeria forever.”
The famous northern socio-political group also argued that the, “position of the current leadership of CAN was most ridiculous as it was polarizing, especially when regard was paid to the fact that northern leaders never missed the opportunity to condemn the senseless killings of innocent people for whatever reason, let alone in the name of God”.
“It is noteworthy that ACF congratulated President Jonathan on his victory in the polls, as well as others who won elections in the spirit of democracy. ACF also made it clear that it was in Nigeria’s best interest that the President succeeds in his work.
“While we are not holding brief for the US government, ACF does not believe it is proper for the current leadership of CAN to be curt and dismissive of any information and suggestions on the security challenges from any quarters, let alone from a super power of different faith from the sect. All information and suggestions should be properly considered without any bias.
“It is the considered opinion of ACF that those in position of influence and leadership, be it traditional, political or informal, should contribute by helping the government to bring all Nigerians together and enable them to live up their collective challenges for the common good, and not to fuel the flames of divisions or cleavages along ethnic, regional or religious lines.
“That accounts for why ACF has maintained that hard times should bring about national grandeur, purposeful leadership and the best in every one and not desperation”, the statement said.
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