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Boko Haram proscription: It’s longoverdue – CAN

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#1 Sunstar191


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Posted 06 June 2013 - 06:37 AM

ABUJA—The Christian Association of
Nigeria, CAN, yesterday, hailed the
Federal Government’s decision to
proscribe Boko Haram and Ansaru
Islamic fundamentalist sects, saying
the action was long overdue. This came on a day Defence
headquarters said 49 suspected Boko
Haram terrorists were apprehended in
various locations in Yobe State by
troops, following a tip off by locals in
some communities. Also, the faction of All Progressives
Grand Alliance, APGA, led by Maxi
Okwu, has lent its voice to those
commending President Goodluck
Jonathan over the proscription of
Boko Haram and its splinter group, Ansaru, declaring their activities
illegal and acts of terrorism. The national Christian body also called
for immediate dissolution of Boko
Haram amnesty committee on the
ground that it had become irrelevant. The Federal Government, on Tuesday,
issued a statement outlawing the
Jamaatu Ahlis-Sunna Liddaawati Wal
Jihad, otherwise known as Boko
Haram, and Jama’atu Ansarul
Muslimina Fi Biladis Sudan, also known as Ansaru, who unleashed
mayhem on the polity in the northern
axis of the country, with 20 years jail
term for anybody associating with
them. The General Secretary of CAN, Rev.
Musa Asake, articulated the
association’s position while speaking
with Vanguard, shortly after a press
conference on the launching of a
nationwide campaign for the restoration of core values in the
society, coming up on July 14, in
Abuja. He said: “CAN has always had one
position; it has always believed that
these groups should have been
designated before this time. “CAN President has spoken on this and
he got opposition from people, even
when he addressed the congress of
United States, he came back home,
and some people were even saying he
should be arrested, but we thank God that we are alive today to witness
what Pastor Oritsejafor said is true. “The federal government was very
slow but thank God, now the
government has woken up from its
own sleep, to know that these are
evil groups who do not know God. “They were killing Christians, burning
down churches, people were not
saying much, the so-called northern
elders were not saying much, but God
has unveiled them. We now known
that these are criminals, these are just blood-thirsty people, they don’t mean
well for Nigeria. “If you see the unveiling of the
bushes, where they have their
syringes, they drug themselves; they
have condoms, for what? These are
the people that want to replace the
constitution of the country with Sharia, to do away with churches. “Federal government, thank you for
the step you have taken, even though
it is late, it is better late than never.” On the N1.1b ransom placed on
Shekau by the United States
government, Rev. Asake said it was
belated, adding that their action at
the beginning of the insurgence was
lackadaisical. “The US is coming too late. They were
trying to behave as if this issue was
not very serious, because it was not
touching them. But I believe that
there were some influential Nigerians
from the north that tried to dissuade the US,” he said. The CAN scribe said with the latest
development, the amnesty committee
was no longer relevant and should,
therefore, be dissolved, and urged
Christians not to cease praying for the
country. “CAN has been consisted right from
the beginning. We don’t need
amnesty committee. We called on the
federal government that it was going
to waste taxpayers’ money, but they
did not listen. “Now, tell me what is that committee
doing now, what are they going to do,
when the groups are running away
and their evil act are discovered. We
are fascinated. It is only General
Buhari who is trying to defend them. We don’t need any amnesty
committee,” Rev. Asake maintained. Speaking on theme of the campaign;
‘Be the Change You Want to See’, the
Director in-charge of national issues
for CAN, Rev. William Okoye, said the
programme was designed to
encourage all Christians return to sound biblical discipline which would
lead them to be examples of what
they preached, taught and carried on
the crusade to the larger society. He said: “Lack of purposeful
leadership has been identified to be
the heart of Nigeria’s problems. The
need for a new breed of courageous
and visionary leaders of integrity,
who are able to lead transformation in all spheres of society, is therefore
both critical and urgent. “Today, our country gropes in the
dark, looking for a new dawn. The
church is expected to play a prominent
role in her rebirth, reformation and
reconstruction through a redefinition
of the nation’s morality, code of conduct and discipline. “These are achievable if the church
places greater emphasis on sound
biblical teachings and values.” Meanwhile, the Defence headquarters
has said 49 suspected Boko Haram
terrorists were apprehended in
various locations in Yobe State by
troops, following a tip off by locals in
some communities. A statement signed by the Director of
Public Relations, Brig-General Chris
Olukolade, noted that the arrests
which were made during cordon and
search operation, also witnessed the
recovery of various weapon. Olukolade said weapons such as AK 47
rifles, locally made pistols and
ammunition were recovered by the
troops who combed such villages as
Rugan Fulani, Arikime, Afghanistan
and Ngandu villages”. He said: “Police stations are now
being reopened in some parts of
Borno State. At Kirenowa,
detachments of Police Anti-Terrorist
unit have been deployed to
complement security in the area. “A key terrorist who specializes in
recruiting young men into the Boko
Haram fold has been apprehended by
troops in Maiduguri following a tip off. “The same individual who also
watches over the insurgents’ armoury
was arrested in one of the cordon and
search operations by the special
forces. “Another group of five insurgents, all
Nigeriens were arrested when troops
stormed their hideout at Mallam Fatori
as they attempted to escape in two
Toyota Cruiser Jeeps. “Troops continue to patrol the
notorious Sambisa forest and are also
cordoning the Alou forest and Gwoza
hills. More abandoned vehicles,
weapons and other items are being
recovered in the camps of the insurgents. “Among the recent finds are rifles,
double barrel guns, various charms
and amulets, machine guns as well as
pairs of camouflage uniforms, bows
and quiver and assorted rifle
magazine”. “Others are handset, walkie-talkie,
car number plates and some food
items. Abandoned vehicles recovered
include a Golf Car, a Honda, Customs
Pickup Van, Honda (2003 Model) and a
Volkswagen Monte Carlo.” The feat of restoring peace to Yobe
State and arrest of 49 terrorists with
the help of locals was broken to the
Defence Headquarters Operation
Assessment Team in Damaturu. The team, led by Air Commodore BE
Inyang, was also informed that all the
camps of the terrorists in the area had
been dislodged as some of the
insurgents fled towards Niger
Republic. The DHQ team was also informed of a
trend where some particular crimes
had now taken the place of terrorism
as the criminals now resort to
brigandage, robbery and attempted
assassination of business rivals. Similarly, All Progressives Grand
Alliance, APGA, faction led by Maxi
Okwu has lent its voice to those
commending President Goodluck
Jonathan over the proscription of
Boko Haram and its splinter group Ansaru and declaring their activities
illegal and acts of terrorism. Okwu, the factional national
chairman, in a statement issued by his
Senior Media Assistant, Francis Ede,
described Dr. Jonathan’s action as
bold, decisive and courageous. The party said: “We affirm that the
President’s action which is pursuant
to Section 2 of the Terrorism
Prevention Act 2011 (as amended) is
not only timely and in tandem with
efforts of the Federal Government to checkmate the horror and
unmitigated calamities which these
groups and their collaborators have
unleashed on innocent Nigerians. “The action of Mr. President has also
vindicate our earlier position on this
matter that no government anywhere
in the world would fight terrorism
with kid gloves and succeed; that
governments all over the world given the international collaboration and
dimension of terrorism should close
ranks and share intelligence and
strategy in the fight against this
hydra headed monster that has
afflicted the world. “This summation informed our earlier
commendation of Mr. President’s
stand on the matter during his official
state visit to Yobe and Borno States a
few months ago when he affirmed
that his government would not fold hands while its citizens, including
security officials were being
slaughtered with impunity. We
agreed with Mr. President then as at
now, aware that it is only such
decisive action that can save us from this scourge. “We also wish to thank the
government of the United States of
America for its intervention in the
fight against Boko Haram in Nigeria.”..http://www.vanguardn...ng-overdue-can/

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