The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has expressed sadness with the reported killing, by the Boko Haram insurgents, of Rev. Lawan Andimi, the CAN Chairman of Michika Local Government Area and the District Church Council Secretary of the Ecclesiya Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN) Church in Michika, Adamawa state.
The EYN Church pastor was abducted by the insurgents two weeks ago following an attack on Michika town and his captors subsequently released a video in which he pleaded with government to secure his release.
The insurgents, who reportedly demanded £2million, rejected the N50million ransom offered for his release, as stated by the CAN branch chairman in Michika local government, Bishop Dami Mamza, before executing him on Monday.
The Director, Legal and Public Affairs, CAN, Evangelist Kwamkur Samuel Vondip, in a statement on Tuesday said the President of the CAN, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, the CAN leadership and the Nigerian Church are saddened with the development.
According to him, the late Rev. Andimi while in captivity appeal to the leadership of his church and the Federal Government to come to his rescue.
He said the Church did everything within her reach to secure the safe release of the late pastor but it was not possible as they did not have the military power to do so. “Just last Sunday, a clergyman, Rev Denis Bagauri was murdered by unknown gunmen in his residence at Mayo Belwa of Adamawa state.
“The Church views the unabated kidnappings, extortions and killings of Christians and innocent Nigerians as shameful to the government that each time boasts that it has conquered insurgency.
“It is reprehensible and saddening that each time the government comes out to claim the defeat of the insurgency, more killings of our people are committed.
“In the light of the current developments and the circumstantial facts surrounding the prevailing upsurge of attacks against the church, it will be difficult for us to believe that the Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari is not colluding with the insurgents to exterminate Christians in Nigeria bearing in mind the very questionable leadership of the security sector that has been skewed towards a religion and region!
“Is that lopsidedness not a cover up for the operation of the insurgency? If not, why couldn’t the well-equipped security agents of Nigeria get this man (that was) killed rescued?” Vondip said.
He urged the Christians to be calm and challenged the Federal Government to be more proactive about effort to get rid of the continuous siege on Nigeria and end the wanton killings and destructions of lives and property of Nigerians, if the government is to be taken seriously. He also urged the Federal Government to ensure the release of Leah Sharibu and hundreds of other victims in the Boko Haram and ISWAP captivity before it is too late, adding that a government that cannot protect the governed is a failed government.
He expressed sympathy with the immediate family of Late Rev. Andimi, President and members of EYN Church, the government of Adamawa state and the entire Nigeria Church. He wondered why the government and the security agencies still claimed that the war against the insurgents and other crimes has been won.
He said, “If the security agencies are not living up to the expectations of the government, why hasn’t it overhauled them with a view of injecting new visionary ones into the security system?”