This is the official blog of the Nigeria-based Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), a human rights organization which promotes, protects and projects the rights of Muslims. This group condemns terrorism and all acts of violence. Its motto is 'Dialogue, Not Violence'
Wednesday, October 3, 2018
CAN IS PAMPERING BEROM CHRISTIAN TERRORISTS
3rd October, 2018
IS PAMPERING BEROM CHRISTIAN TERRORISTS
The President, Christian Association of
Nigeria (CAN), Samson Ayokunle, on Monday defended Berom Christians over the
Dura-Du pond incident. It will be recalled that the car of a missing Muslim
general, Idris Alkali, was found at the bottom of a pond after the army
forcefully drained it. More than 500 Berom women had made spirited efforts to stop
the army from draining the pond by staging protests half nude near the pond.
Reacting to this
development, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) expressed disappointment.
In a press statement signed
by its director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, the organization said, “We note with serious concern that CAN
president stopped short of condemning the Berom Christian terrorists. This is
very disappointing. It is jejune, puerile and insipid. CAN is defending the
indefensible. It would have been better to keep mute if the Christian umbrella
body could not denounce or disown its own.
“Why can’t CAN condemn Berom terrorists the same way that
Muslims condemned Boko Haram? Nigerian Muslims washed their hands off Boko
Haram terrorists even when they attacked Christians. We did not wait until they
attacked Muslims before condemning them. But CAN president wants to pamper
Berom Christian terrorists even when it is evident that they have been
responsible for the killing of hundreds of their Muslim neighbours and other
Muslims and Fulanis who were mere travelers passing through the axis.
“Nigerian security agencies were able to encircle Boko
Haram terrorists and they were able to restrict their activities to a small
area within Borno because Nigerian Muslims wasted no time in denouncing and
disowning them. For failing to condemn Berom terrorists, CAN president may be
nurturing a killing machine. Berom terrorists are capable of growing into a
more vicious terrorist group whose deadly tentacles will spread to all nooks
and cranies of Nigeria.
“CAN president is joining forces with Berom women who protested
that soldiers should not come near the pond. The women lied that it was their
only source of drinking water when there are more than thirty similar ponds
around the vicinity. When that failed to stop the soldiers, they tried the
superstition angle claiming that strange deaths would start to occur in the
community if the pond was drained but this is a community of Christians, not one
filled with idol worshippers.
“What has CAN president said about the missing general? What has
he to say about the general’s car that was found right at the bottom of the
same pond where the wives of terrorists protested deceptively? What of the
other four cars that were found inside the same pond? What do the findings mean
“Furthermore, Ayodele was quick to condemn the action of
security agents but found it difficult to condemn the Berom Christian
terrorists who perpetrated the atrocity. It is double standard of the highest
order. We are stupefied.
“To add salt to injury, CAN president referred to the missing
general as “a missing ex-soldier”. That is an unforgivable understatement. Ayokunle
should know that General Alkali (rtd) is more than an ordinary ex-soldier. This
is a whole army general for crying out loud and he dismisses him as “a missing
ex-soldier”. General Alkali was the Chief of Administration
in the Nigerian Army up till the time of his retirement. We take exception to this attempt to
trivialize the issue.
“Afterall we know how CAN regularly mobilizes retired Christian
army officers to intimidate the entire nation. While we find no need to do the
same thing with retired Muslim officers, we are worried that the CAN president
attempted to equate the general with an ordinary recruit.
“We are constrained by the latest development, to caution
both serving and retired senior military and police officers who are Muslims to
take extra security measures around them, to avoid regimented pattern of life
and, where possible, to avoid taking the same routes everyday”.
Speaking further, Akintola urged the army to make safety of
Plateau highways its priority. “The Nigerian Army should make it impossible for
the Beroms to block the highways in future. It is a barbaric behavior.
Community clashes happen everywhere in Nigeria but the combatants have never
been known to block the highway and start killing innocent travelers.
“Berom community has taken on Nigerian Muslims. They stop
vehicles on the highways, pull out Fulanis and Muslims in such vehicles and
kill them. Their vehicles are dumped in the ponds. Another 18-seater bus was
found at the bottom of the Dura-Du pond yesterday. Anybody can guess the
whereabouts of the occupants. There is no gainsaying at this point that
Nigerian Muslims need protection from Berom Christian cannibals.
“This is a very irrational behavior although we are not
surprised because any community which jointly participated in the killing,
roasting and eating of hundreds of other human beings can never be normal
again. We recall the massacre of hundreds of Jos Muslims in 2001 and the
gruesome killing of Muslim worshippers (at the Id ground during Salah) whose
bodies were then roasted and eaten up in 2011. Nobody was tried for this
genocide by Jang’s militia men. Cannibalism has taken its natural toll on
Beroms. This community needs to be quarantined for some time in order to
undergo rehabilitation. Our hearts bleed for children who are growing up in
“We urge Muslims all over Nigeria to prepare a record of
all their missing members for the past twenty years. This can be done through
their local mosques. We must collate the statistics of all Muslims who used to
pray regularly in our mosques but who disappeared suddenly without explanation
or who travelled and did not return. The details should be sent to the
headquarters of the Jama’at Nasril Islam (JNI) in Kaduna or to any major
Islamic organization closest to the mosque for onward transmission to the JNI.
“In our concluding remarks, we charge the military to sustain
its action in the Berom community. The killers and their sponsors must be found
and dealt with according to the law. To find General Idris Alkali (rtd) dead or
alive is a task that must be done. The Nigerian military has never been known
to cowardly abandon a good cause or forsake camaraderie. There is no better way
to prove the army’s professionalism and gallantry than in this case. We also call
for coordinated security measures that will ensure that the Berom are never
able to block Plateau highways again. We urge CAN to rope in its wild Berom
terrorists instead of seeking to extenuate their crimes”.
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)