The Christian Association of Nigeria has hailed the military Joint Task Force for clamping down on the Boko Haram sect and reducing its attacks on innocent civilians in the North.
In a telephone interview with Punch, the Secretary of CAN, Dr. Musa Asake, said progress had been made in the fight against Boko Haram.
“The JTF has done their best and now we have the army there and it have done its best even though there are still killings going on, it’s been a while since we heard of large-scale bombing and other activities of Boko Haram. We salute their effort and we will continue to support them,” he said.
Asked if Christians in the North felt safer to go to their places of worship, Asake said they were glad with the relative quietness and hoped that the Boko Haram members would not regroup to continue their attacks.
He said, “Things are quiet for now, we don’t know whether they are regrouping or not. But we are thanking God that things are quiet for now and we pray it remains so. That is why we salute the JTF and the Army.”
On the Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of the Security Challenges in the North, which has the mandate to work out a possible amnesty for repentant members of the sect, Asake said CAN would not support amnesty for Boko Haram and was not interested in the work of the committee.
“Count CAN out of that amnesty committee. We are not part of it, we don’t believe in them. So, I don’t have any comment on amnesty committee. Amnesty for who? CAN has a position on that and we are not changing it. Count us out when it comes to amnesty committee, we don’t know what they are saying,” he said.
Concerning the N5.7bn reportedly released by the Federal Government for the compensation of victims of the 2011 post-election violence in nine states of the North, Asake said CAN was not aware of the details of the disbursement plan for the funds.
President Goodluck Jonathan in July promised that the Federal Government would closely monitor the disbursement of the N5.7bn, which it had approved for victims of the 2011 post-election violence in nine of the 14 affected states to ensure fairness and equity.
The President had approved N1.57bn for Bauchi State; N55m for Sokoto; N93m for Zamfara; N433m for Niger; and N208m for Jigawa.
Others were N1.97bn for Katsina; N944m for Kano; N420m for Adamawa, and N43m for Akwa Ibom State.