- A group has warned the founder of Liberation City against making reckless statement that could tear Nigeria into pieces
- The group said the recent outburst on the crisis in Kaduna State and Governor Nasir El-Rufai is unexpected of a preacher of the gospel
- According to the group, it is important to calls to question what Pastor Chris Okafor believes in
The founder of Liberation City, Pastor Chris Okafor, has been warned against making reckless statement that could tear Nigeria into pieces.
The New Initiative for Credible Leadership (NICreL), which gave the warning, said Okafor’s recent outburst on the crisis in Kaduna State and Governor Nasir El-Rufai is unexpected of a preacher of the gospel.
Pastor Okafor had during a Sunday programme warned the Kaduna state Governor to avoid persecuting Christians and preachers in the state or risks the wrath of God.
The preacher gave El-Rufai, whom he likened to Biblical Herob seven days to reverse bill at the state House of Assembly to license religious bodies or would be visited by God.
In a statement released on Wednesday, March 27, NiCrel's executive director, Samson Onwu, said Okafor’s comment could undermine peace and security across the country.
Onwu said inciting comments over the bill has no place in a country governed by law and he must therefore be censured to prevent him from exploiting the cover of being a clergyman to promote ethno-sectarian hate in Nigeria.
He said such behaviour calls to question what Okafor believes in as there is no record of Jesus Christ endorsing attacks against those in authority or violent response to even those that attacked him.
"The 2019 elections saw the Christian faith being exploited and abused to promote politics of hate, a development that demystified many clergymen that were once held in high esteem but have now become false prophets before their followers," Onwu said.
"There is no doubt that this is the fate that would befall Pastor Okafor when the seven days ultimatum he handed to Governor El-Rufai to rescind the bill or die within two years fails to materialize.
"While it is well known that many of the hire-for-pay clergy men are under pressure from those they sold fake prophecies to and therefore smarting from their failed predictions in the 2019 elections, there is no way to justify Pastor Okafor’s resort to incitement as a coping mechanism.
"The pastor has by his acts and utterances certified himself as a candidate for the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the event that any sectarian violence breaks out because of his preaching.
"Pending when Pastor Okafor will keep a date with the ICC, we urge the Department of State Services (DSS) to do the needful by immediately investigating his motives and getting him to undertake not to give effect to his threats as this would lead to avoidable loss of life.
We urge the Kaduna State House of Assembly and the Kaduna State Government to note that the incitement by Pastor Okafor is a wake-up call that they cannot continue to delay passing the bill and signing it into law if fanatical and extremist clergymen must be checked.
"In the interim, the state government should explore exiting legislation, including the anti-terrorism laws, to discourage merchants of hate whose main intention is to cause crises that are of the magnitude as terrorism," Onwu noted.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Governor El-Rufai has vowed to be fair and just to all the people of the state irrespective of their political affiliation.
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The governor said elections were over and so it was time to provide good governance to the people as he appealed to his opponents and supporters to join hand together and work for the progress and development of the state.
Legit.ng gathered that El-Rufai, who made the comment at a dinner organised in his honour at the Government House in the night of Friday, March 22, appealed to the people of the state to live in peace and harmony with each other.
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