The recent call by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) on the government to release from detention the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky along with former President Goodluck Jonathan’s National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki have attracted criticism from the Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria (CCFN).
The CCFN faulted the request for the pair’s freedom in a statement issued by its president, James Amedu, describing the appeal attributed to the CAN President, Reverend Samson Ayokunle as “inhuman and most uncharitable.”
The group asked the CAN president to apologize to Christians and many others who have in any way suffered directly or indirectly from the actions of these two individuals.
According to the statement, “The Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria notes with disappointment; the statement credited to Rev. (Dr.) Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), where he called for the release of the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Ibrahim Elzakzaky and the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki by the federal government.
“While it is no doubt that the CAN as the umbrella body of Christians in Nigeria represents the interest of Christians in Nigeria, it is, however, inexcusable to delve into partisan politics in exchange for monetary gains as exemplified by Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, the president of CAN.
“The Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria would wish to educate the CAN president on the need to always protect the integrity of the Christian Association of Nigeria by putting the interest of the millions of Christians in Nigeria above personal interest.
“It is also worrisome to add that the two individuals in question are standing trial for acts of terrorism and a financial heist that led to the loss of lives of innocent Nigerians, which has been widely condemned by all and sundry in Nigeria. And for the CAN president to call for their release without recourse to the gravity of the crimes they have committed is an indication that either Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle was a beneficiary of the Dasuki loot or he has been co-opted into the plot by Iran to release El-Zakzaky from detention forcefully.
“The Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria wishes to state that unless Rev. Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle wants to feign ignorance when Boko Haram bombed the St. Theresa Catholic Church Suleja on Christmas day. Is Rev Dr. Samson Olasupo Ayokunle also aware that the Islamic Movement in Nigeria has committed various crimes against the state and the people? Is he also aware that members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria have on numerous occasions killed innocent civilians as well as military and police officers going about their legitimate duties?
“The Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria is also concerned about the involvement of CAN president in corruption and terrorism-related offenses, so much so that he openly canvassed for their release on the pages of newspapers.
“The Concerned Christian Forum of Nigeria views such call and the action of the CAN President as inhuman and most uncharitable and an indication that monies must have exchanged hands hence the selfish and inglorious request for the release of Sambo Dasuki and Ibrahim El-Zakzaky regardless of the crimes they have committed against humanity.