SOUTH EAST INSECURITY: Breakdown of CAN’s statement shows it backs terrorism against Nigeria, Govt – Investigations


Ayokunle, CAN President.

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More reasons terrorism by Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Eastern Security Network (ESN) in South East Nigeria were not spoken against by ethnic, religious and political leaders in the region are said to have been revealed from Monday’s statement Christian Association of Nigeria in the region, which shows that, like others, the religious body approves activities of the proscribed terrorist group.
CAN had issued a statement in which it failed to acknowledge the pains and implications of IPOB spareheading the killing of security officers including Atmrmy officers and soldiers in ambush, burning of police stations and killing of members of other regions in the region with intent to inciting ethnic and religious war.
Rather, the religious group turned his eyes away from the much “disgusting” exposition of Twitter’s promotion of terrorist and other criminal activities as seen in its taking side with IPOB, whose inciting tweets it let on while President Muhammadu Buhari’s warning them of consequences of their actions were pulled down in circumstances considered by popular opinions to be insult and serious attack in the symbol of Nigeria.
Those who argue that President Buhari’s account deletion was not the first by leader of a country was quickly rendered irrelevant because, “President Donald Trump invited and promoted resurrection against America but President Muhammadu Buhari protected Nigeria against resurrection agents.  Where then has Buhari deserved the Twitter’s treatment to Trump?” A Nigerian public affairs analyst said.
CAN, finally, exposed itself as comfortable with those killings of security officers, other innocent Nigerians by, rather than condemning the terrorists, helping them misrepresent and over-exagerate the situation saying government security agents and have been engaged in gun battle with IPOB commanders and militants, are the ones killing Igbo youths.
‘King of Dragon’, an IPOB commander said to be the mastermind of the killing of security officers and burning of police stations in Owerri, Imo State, is one of many terrorists that have been killed during gun battle with security operatives. But the Christian Association of Nigeria now can only see how that translates to killing Igbo youths, many patriots are angry saying.
In a big surprise, CAN condemned what it described as the indiscriminate arrest and killing of Igbo youths by security agents in the South East, a statement to which Nigerians have reacted describing the religious body as partnering with unpatriotic politicians, who are behind the insecurity and incitement of same by ethnic and religious leaders in the South of Nigeria.
Although it did not start it, Buhari’s government has been grappling with war against terrorism since it came on board on May 29, 2015 and during its first one year decimated Boko Haram and limited their activities to the Lake Chad Basin area until, in the build up to 2019 presidential election, the resurgence was experienced and it started spreading to the South West with elements exploiting herders, farmers clashes as opportunity to advance the evil course, while in the South East region IPOB tok charge doing their killings and destructions without any leader including the religious leaders that are now blaming government, able to speak up against them.
President Buhari was, however, described as a wick and failed President for watching and not curbing the activities led by Nnamdi Kanu in the East and Sunday Adeyemo a.k.a. Sunday Igboho in the West during which, at respective times, several killings later found to be based on ethnic profiling of criminals took place.
Following the killings, including of a prominent Northern Nigerian politician, Alhaji Ahmed Gulak, and attacks on offices of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), therefore, President Buhari warned those who wanted to destroy Nigeria that shocks were coming on their way.
He said it was not expected that anyone like him, who experienced and fought the civil war of between 1967 and 1970, would want another one, tweets of which Twitter deleted while continuing to allow tweets by Nnamdi Kanu to run, and for which the American social media networking platform was banned for promoting terrorist activities against Nigeria and its government.
To the shocks of many, some leaders of the region, who have been silent over IPOB/ESN’s criminal killings, and professional leaders such as of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Nigeria Guild of Editors (NGE), International Press Council (IPI) individuals like Prof. Wole Soyinka and leadership of opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) took the lead condemning the government and the President for the Twitter ban.
They were followed by United States of America, United Kingdom, Canada and European Union, through their ambassadors in Nigeria, who issued a joint press statement and said the action by Nigerian government banning Twitter was not only against press freedom and rights of Nigerians to information but also, particularly in America’s own submission, a wrong message to investors.
The Nigerian Government, which ahead of the ban had expressed doubts about the mission of Twitter in the country, however, proved to all the local and foreign critics that Nigeria is a serious country and that the administration has a duty to provide security, uphold the sovereignty of the country and therefore summoned the envoys of those countries to a meeting based on their comments.
At the meeting, on Monday, called by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, the government told the international community the offence of Twitter and that it would not sit back and watch social media destabilize its country. Clarifying the conclusions of the meeting, the office of the minister dismissed twist in the report circulating saying it did not give Twitter conditions for the ban on its operations to be listed. The ban, it said, is indefinite, a bold step that has gladdened majority of Nigerians home and abroad.
Nigeria and its patriotic citizens across the world had expressed dismay that Twitter, which has not communicated with authorities since its ban, said in a circulated and yet to be denied statement that it does not recognise who President Muhammadu Buhari is and does not know which country he leads.
Still, none of the local and foreign critics, in their respective statements condemning the government, made a single reference pointing to what Twitter ever did wrong. Rather, some Nigerian gave a human angle to whip sentiments that incured the anger of many when they said the country had lost N2 billion in 24 hours that the ban was announced.
The DEFENDER’s investigations revealed that Twitter, although has over 35 million subscribers in Nigeria, is not registered in the country despite that it makes chunk of its money here. The investigations revealed further that Twitter deliberately did not register yet has been doing business in Nigeria because it did not want to take responsibility for its actions, namely promotion of terrorist IPOB and criminalities against the state.
It was also gathered that the US social media networking platform does not pay tax despite that a Nigerian, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is on its board.  The government has, in showing more sense of seriousness, directed not only that all telecommunications companies in Nigeria deactivate access to Twitter but also that whoever would use any other means to frustrate the effect of the ban would have done that at his own risk.
While all these efforts were ongoing for government of Buhari, the first ever to challenge attempt by any power in the world trying to undermine the sovereignty of Nigeria to recover the country to the pride of its patriotic citizens, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) came open and blunt with a shocking support for the enemies against the country when it described the nation’s fight against them as indiscriminately killing of Igbo youths.
CAN also called war against insecurity in the South East as “atrocities and genocide” and condemned the silence of the governors of the zone in the face of it.
The CAN Chairman in the South-East, Bishop Goddy Okafor, lamented in the statement that “no day passes now without one form of report or the other on the arrest and killing of innocent youths by security agents, who claim to be hunting unknown gunmen.”
It said, “It now appears that every youth in the South-East now wears the tag of unknown gunmen. This is sad and should not continue. We have had cases of people killed with reckless abandon by these security agencies, including a young girl sent to her early grave at the Imo State Government Gate, another young man murdered for ‘violating check-point rule’, whatever that means, and just recently, a Germany-based Nigerian brought down on his way to the Owerri airport. The list is endless. This is not to talk of tens of youths arrested everyday and kept incommunicado; nobody knows whether they are dead or alive.
“It has now become imperative to not only caution the security agencies, but to also ask our governors to speak up. Their silence is not good at all, because they swore” to defend and protect their people.
The CAN said, “In the North-East where Boko Haram is wreaking havoc every day, killing security forces and bandits kidnapping hundreds of schoolchildren, has every Northern youth been tagged Boko Haram or bandit? Why has the South-East been singled out for this onslaught? We say enough is enough.”
The DEFENDER reports that the CAN, to the surprise of many of its respondents, not only failed to mention killings of military officers, soldiers by ambush, and criminal killing of officers of the police, DSS, Customs, Immigration, and several attacks on INEC offices and burning of police stations across South East, but did not in any part of its statement acknowledge the killing of Northern politician, Ahmed GULAK liked on his way to Sam Mbadiwe Airport Owerri by terrorists it now calls “Igbo youths being killed” by same security men at whose effort its (CAN) security has been guaranteed to operate, including being able to issue a statement.
CAN, who along with other political elites in the region, had been silent like enjoying the insecurity inflicted on the region by IPOB/ESN terrorism, urged the South East governors to begin total implementation of the ban on open-grazing, stressing that “despite the Asaba Declaration, herds of cattle are still grazing openly in every part of the South-East. The governors should stop barking without biting.”
In the meantime, more Nigerians have assured the Buhari Administration of their support on his ongoing effort to rid the country of terrorism, banditry, cultism, armed robbery and other criminalities regardless of what ethnic and religious coloration any member of the society world read into it.
One of them said in war against insecurity, no perfect situation, reason all that see evils against the rest of the society must have been speaking up against them because they should not expect that any reasonable government would sit back and watch terrorists destroy the country or any part of the country it leads.
“CAN should have been knowledgeable enough to know this before coming out with this big shame it calls press statement mentioning only one or two innocent, if it is saying the truth, that have gone with it whereas it fails to acknowledge the killing of security officers and non-Igbo leaders killed in the South East. What a biased religious group!”
Another of the patriots said: “Has it ever occured to you that this CAN and other members of the South East, including the senior lawyers and journalists among them, have told us that the killings in the region are by Unknown Gunmen?
“The truth is, there are no Unknown Gunmen anywhere. Those that have been killing security officers and destroying public infrastructures in the area are known people. They are IPOB/ESN terrorists. It is those political elites who do not want their connection with the elements mentioned that are selling the idea of Unknown Gunmen to the media and, unfortunately because the media too cannot ask them questions, they bought the idea. The killers in South East are known to be members of IPOB/ESN led by Nnamdi Kanu,” he said.

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