Sa’ad Abubakar, the Sultan of Sokoto, has debunked the claim of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) that individuals practising the Christian faith are being persecuted in Nigeria.
The Sultan expressed his shock at CAN’s claim at the closing ceremony of 77th annual Islamic vacation course (IVC), organised by the Muslim Society of Nigeria (MSSN) at Bayero University, Kano.
CAN had in a statement issued by Adebayo Oladeji, Special Assistant on Media and Communications to Samson Ayokunle, CAN President, declared its support for the inclusion of Nigeria by the United States in the list of nations that permit religious persecution.
The association claimed that “not fewer than 95 per cent of those who are being detained by the terrorists are Christians and the government has been paying lips service towards securing their freedoms”.
But speaking on the issue, Sultan Abubakar described the claim by CAN as “false and partial”.
According to him, the criminal activities allegedly perpetrated by armed Fulani herdsmen were not triggered by religion, “because not all Fulanis are Muslims”.
“If such persecution really exist, such is supposed to be tabled at the Interfaith Forum where Muslims and Christian leaders meet periodically to discuss issues that would promote harmonious coexistence between the two religions.
“Many Fulanis are atheists whose main interest is to protect their cattle,” the religious and traditional ruler said at the event.