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Amidst Religious Tension: Residents Want CAN, Muslims Council Leaders Arrested

•Convene Inter-Religious Meeting Now, Clerics Tell Gov. Ishaku

 •Don't Incite Religious Crisis In Taraba, Youths Warn MURIC, Others

Many residents of Taraba state are calling for the arrest of leaders of the Christian Association of Nigeria CAN and the Muslim Council of Taraba State over statements capable of causing religious violence in the state.


Many residents who spoke to Taraba Truth and Facts Newspaper said several statements coming from both religious organizations are politically motivated to incite the public ahead of next general elections.


The Muslim Council had in a  press conference on the 21st of January, alleging that the state governor Darius Ishaku has marginalized the Muslim population in the state in his appointments and promotions to key positions in the state, sparking a chain of reactions from various government affiliations.


CAN on its part while condemning the Council said Taraba can even go ahead a produce a Christian/Christian ticket claiming to be the majority, a statement the Muslim Council described as going too far.


A University don, Dr Ahmad Adamu told this newspaper that it's a political fallacy that any religion dominates in a society like Taraba.  

"How do you determine the dominate religion in a society like Taraba where you have both faith in almost every family. We are a peaceful state, they should stop dividing us along religion lines- I have families who are Christians and I don't feel inferior to them, neither do they feel superior to me, we are one peaceful family. CAN and Muslims Council should leave winning elections to politicians. In Taraba its unfortunate those only ruling classes are united irrespective of their religion.

A trader in Jalingo Mrs Salome Ayuba on her part said "If you walk on the street of Taraba, you will see that the people are united but every election year they will introduce religion to our polity, and this has taken the state backward- we are not interested in the religion of whosoever is contesting, we are interested in good governance, development and a conducive environment for everyone to thrive."

Alhaji Yusuf Garba on his part called for arrest of those making inciting statements in the state.

 "I think the DSS and Police should arrest both Muslim Council and CAN leaders because their utterances are capable  of causing violence, the manner in which the Muslim Council channeled their grievances its wrong but the response of CAN is highly condemnable, both parties are wrong and that why government have to address the issue," Garba said.


Musa Bala, a security expert on his part said "It's a shame that the DSS have not invited these people for questioning, it's a time bomb waiting to explode,  they should unravel the motives behind these needless exchange of anger from both organizations, Tarabans are one, they should promote what unite us than what divide us. Unemployment, hunger and poverty do not know religion or tribe. So those pushing the state to the edge of religion violence should understand that it will consume everybody."


Josiah Mustapha said the current situation have been poorly managed by both religious leaders who threw caution into the wind with their unguarded utterances.  "We are reaping what was sown by some desperate politicians in 2015, those who introduced religion hatred to our polity must never be allowed back to power. It's a poorly managed situation from both camps, it would have been expected that as leaders they would consider the effect of their statements on the society, we have pagans who are traditional worshippers in Taraba, so it is shameful that we are discussing religion when other states are talking developments."  


Hajiya Hadiza Ibrahim Lau said clerics in the state should stay away from politics and focus on preach and redirecting the people to Almighty.

" Any cleric either Pastor or Imam that preaches politics on its pulpit should be arrested, enough of people been divided by selfish religion leaders and politicians. We want quality leaders in public office, we want leaders that will give us standard schools and better infrastructures, and we are tired of all these religion nonsense promoted by politicians."

A Coordinator of the Taraba Inter-Faith Peace Coalition, Mallam Ayuba Shitu Abdullahi on his part called on Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku to quickly convene an inter religious meeting to address the issue before it snowball into a full blown religious violence.

"the way out of this situation is for the State government to call all religious stakeholder for a round table discussion, we need to seat down and talk about this issues particularly now that we are going into political campaign. Its utterly disgusting for us to be bragging about who are the majority and minority between Christians and Muslims- no  Holy Book supported such.

"We need to genuinely have this discussion as Tarabans, we need to put aside our sentiments for the development of this state. Both religions promote peace and peaceful coexistence with one and other so all these arguments that could lead to crisis are ungodly."          



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