CAN Seeks Buhari’s Intervention In Death Sentence On 5 Christian Youths

The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari, to intervene in the death sentence passed on five Christian youths in Adamawa State.

This is even as the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN, faulted the sentencing of five Christians to death.

They are Alex Amos, Alheri Phanuel, Holy Boniface, Jerry Gideon and Jari Sabagi.

The youths were recently convicted by Justice Abdul-Azeez Waziri of the Adamawa High Court for conspiring and attacking three herdsmen at Kadamun village in Demsa Local Government Area, LGA of the state; killing one of them, Adamu Buba, and maiming the other two as well as several cattle.

According to CAN, President Buhari’s intervention would prevent a hasty implementation of the death sentence and give room for study of the judgment’s text with a view to preventing a miscarriage of justice and a future re-occurence.

In a statement yesterday by its President, Revd Samson Ayokunle, CAN said: “Despite the outrage that has trailed the killings of Christians in Nigeria, it is disheartening that none of the killers has been brought to justice. We are shocked at the speed of light deployed by security and judicial officers in sentencing the alleged killers of the herdsman in Adamawa state.

“Why did the court discharge the alleged killers of Madam Bridget Agbahime on the orders of the Kano State Government? Why have security officials not arrested those behind the killings of Christians in Southern Kaduna, while those arrested for the murder of Mrs. Eunice Elisha Olawale in Kubwa, Abuja, have been set free by the Nigeria Police?

“In view of the above, we are asking President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the death sentence passed on these Christian youths in Adamawa. We have called on our legal team to secure and study the text of the judgment with a view to preventing a miscarriage of justice and a future re-occurence.”

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In a related development, CAN  has said it is disturbed by reports that the Federal Government has allegedly directed the Nigerian Army and Police to recruit some former members of Boko Haram terrorists who recently underwent de-radicalisation programme.

“CAN condemns such a policy in strong terms and ask the Federal Government, especially security agencies, to withdraw that directive which is capable of compromising the nation’s security system,” Ayokunle said.

For PFN, in an interview with journalists in Calabar, yesterday, National Publicity Secretary of PFN, Bishop Emmah Isong, said the leadership of PFN at all levels vehemently oppose some of these policies that tend to divide Nigerians along religious lines rather than uniting the people.

According to him, “It looks as if it is vengeance for a Yola Court to condemn five Christians to death for allegedly killing herdsman when herdsmen are rampaging everywhere killing and maiming innocent Christians and going free.

“Though we are not backing anybody to commit crime, we rather feel that justice must seem to have been done in the case of the five Yola people. Then entire leadership of PFN protest totally against the judgment and call for appeal to squash it.

“It is high time the federal government had intervened and to ensure that those Christians are not killed to forestall further religious conflict within that axis. Instead of killing people for herdsmen, federal government should rather find a way to curtail their activities and provide adequate security to all Nigerians, which the present administration promised on ascension to power in 2015.”