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Don’t Turn Nigeria Into Islamic Nation, Cleric Warns Buhari

Bishop of the Niger, Anglican Communion, Right Reverend Owen Nwokolo, has cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari not to attempt turning the country into Islamic nation because that will not promote peace and concord for the country.

Nwokolo who spoke to newsmen in Onitsha, Anambra State, on Sunday, said there are all indications that the present administration is taking the country there.

He spoke just as Very Rev. Fr. Cajethan Obiekezie said in his homily at St. Patrick Cathedral, Awka, yesterday morning that “Nigeria appears to have taken a one- chance bus”.

Fr. Obiekezie said that the country has virtually collapsed with everything stultified, yet the people were promised change during the election.

He predicted that the present hardship hitting the country is just the beginning.
Bishop Nwokolo, however, cautioned that Christians in the country would resist any attempt to turn the country into an Islamic state with the last drop of their blood.

According to him, the country’s constitution was clear on issues of religion when it guaranteed freedom of religion and made the country a secular nation.

But he feared that “The body language of a leader may show that he is supporting an agenda. That is what we believe is happening.

“Islamic jihads have different colourations. It may include government taking policies to deprive people of certain rights to force people to accept a religion contrary to their faith.

“But our message is that Christians have the right to live and be allowed to enjoy such rights without interference.

“We will continue to speak against any attempts by anybody to deprive Christians in any part of the country of their rights.

“We have sent a delegation to the government and governor of Kaduna State, El Rufai, stating the minds of Christians on freedom of religion as enshrined in the constitution.

“Even where they have approved sharia, it does not stop Christians from practicing their religion.
The bishop maintained that “There are some pointers that there could be an agenda by the present administration to attempt to islamize Nigeria “because at his time as military Head of State we heard about sharia and OIC, and now we are hearing about Fulani herdsmen who are moving round the country with sophisticated weapons; killing people.

He added: “Government doesn’t make haste taking drastic measures against such things. We think that possibly is an agenda tending towards forcing people to accept a religion by force.

“But Christians will resist that. It will not stand because we have studied some of the Islamic agenda, and it is this way they spread with terror.

“As Christians, we won’t preach the carrying of guns, but when they ( Fulani herdsmen)come over to this place, they will know that we cherish our farms; they will know that we cherish our lives and that we’ll not stand to be killed.”