Killings: CAN holds ‘prayer protests’ in Abuja, other states

Members of the RCCG, TEAP Zone, marching through Garki during the prayer protest called for by CAN. Pic credit: Tosin Omoniyi
Members of the RCCG, TEAP Zone, marching through Garki during the prayer protest called for by CAN. Pic credit: Tosin Omoniyi

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has held protests in the capital city and parts of the country to call the government’s attention to the rising spate of killings across the nation.

The Christian group had earlier called on all Christians across the country to embark on a ‘prayer walk’ on Sunday to protest the gruesome killing of the CAN Chairman in Michika Local Government Area of Adamawa State, Lawan Andimi, by Boko Haram terrorists.

Although the federal government has condemned the beheading of the cleric, the CAN said the government has not done enough to protect Christians.

CAN President, Samson Ayokunle, during a briefing with journalists in Abuja on Thursday said the prayer walk was aimed at using prayers to curb the activities of terrorists and criminals who have been orchestrating killings across the country.

He also said (in)actions by the federal government had given such criminals the latitude to carry out crimes unchallenged.

He also called on President Muhammadu Buhari to overhaul the security apparatus in the country to curb the killings.

“Government should order the arrest of the leadership of the Miyetti Allah for sponsoring and perpetuating crime of Nigeria and prosecute them for all the killings in Southern Kaduna, Benue, Plateau and Taraba states, among others.

“Also, government should publish names of all kingpins of the terrorists in detention and those who are being prosecuted,” he was quoted by online medium, Sahara Reporters.

The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, (RCCG) Enoch Adeboye, in a televised broadcast to parishes across the country had urged parishioners to take part in the protest as CAN has directed.

Mr Adeboye also took part in the march in Lagos.

PREMIUM TIMES also understands the marches were held in many states by churches under CAN’s purview.

Abuja protest

In Abuja, the protests were held by numerous parishes of the RCCG as directed by Mr Adeboye.

PREMIUM TIMES observed the prayer walk organised by the Everlasting Arms Parish, Garki, a zonal parish of the RCCG.

The pastor in charge, Evaristus Azodoh, had earlier held intense prayer sessions with the congregation over the insecurity ravaging the country. After the church service, he then led the zone, comprising of many other parishes for a prayer walk along streets of Garki.

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The protest, held under the watchful eyes of security personnel was peaceful as the congregation carried placards decrying the worsening insecurity in the country. They also sang worship songs and prayed as they marched round the streets.

Worsening insecurity

The House of Representatives, just like its Senate counterpart, recently lamented the security situation in Nigeria.

“We will look at what pains you and pains us, that is insecurity in the land; it is alarming,” a lawmaker had said.

PREMIUM TIMES has also extensively reported on the insecurity across the nation carried out by various armed groups and individuals.

Apart from the resurgent Boko Haram attacks in the North-east, there have been increased cases of killings and kidnappings across the country. In one of the latest incidents, 13 people were killed in a Plateau community.

Amidst the insecurity, the presidency has said Nigerians have reasons to be grateful as the security situation is better than it was before President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office.

“We know what the situation was as at 2015 and we know what it is today. Despite the reversals in security, it is still not as bad as it used to be in this country,” Femi Adesina, President Buhari’s spokesperson, said recently.


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