Christian Leader Warns Nigerian Government

Saturday, May 12, 2012

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

ABJUDA, NIGERIA (Worthy News)-- The head of Nigeria's Christians warned his government to end the attacks targeting his flock after a recent surge in sectarian violence.

"I will now make a final call to the Nigerian government to use all resources available to it to clearly define and neutralise the problem as other nations have done," said Ayo Oritsejafor, head of the Christian Association of Nigeria. "The Church leadership has hitherto put great restraint on the restive and aggrieved millions of Nigerians, but can no longer guarantee such cooperation if this trend of terror is not halted immediately."

Jihadist Boko Haram has already been blamed for attacks that left hundreds dead; just last Sunday, gunmen threw grenades into two church services and then opened fire on the congregations as they tried to flee, killing 19. Although no one took responsibility for these attacks, Boko Haram claimed it bombed a church near Abuja on Christmas day that killed 44.

Oritsejafor warned that Christians may be forced to defend themselves if such attacks continue unabated.

"At this point in the unfolding insecurity challenges, it has become irrelevant whether the root cause is political, religious, ethnic or ideological," Oritsejafor said. "The fundamental issues are that the intimidation, killings, bombings and wanton destruction of lives and properties must stop immediately."

Boko Haram has killed more than 1,000 Christians since 2009.