The Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria, Biliri Local Govt. Area of Gombe State, Rev Joseph John has said that his comments during an interactive session between the State Governor and religious leaders in Biliri, should not be misconstrued as CAN leadership accepting responsibility of any act, as erroneously reported in the media.
Rather, he said, the comments were for calm and peace to reign in the land as well as promote Brotherliness.
Rev John in a statement, said as an indigene and opinion leader in Tangale land, he has a duty and responsibility of promoting peace, hence his decision to go an extra mile to ‘apologise’ and beg the Governor and the Muslim community in Billiri, who have been hurt the most, to forgive and bear with the situation
The CAN Chairman strongly condemned the violence, which he said, could not be a solution to any problem, especially in Tangale land.
He stated that the peaceful protest which was carried out by Tangale women demanding the announcement of the new Mai from the government was later hijacked by misguided few who acted the way they did.
As such, he explained, there was no way CAN would take responsibility for organising the peaceful protest, nor the violence that followed.
He then called on all Christians in the area to continue to pray and seek the face of God, for His intervention and His peace to reign in the land.
Read full text of the Press Statement below
PRESS STATEMENT BY REV. JOSEPH JOHN, CHAIRMAN, CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (CAN), BILLIRI LGA, GOMBE STATE, NIGERIA
My attention has been drawn to an error in media reports, on the remarks I made when his Excellency the executive Governor of Gombe state, Alh. Inuwa Yahaya visited Billiri to interact with religious leaders. Let it be on record that my comments were for calm and peace to reign in the land, as well as promote brotherliness. It should not be mistaken as accepting responsibility that the violence leading to attack on people’s properties and mosques were carried out by members of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
As an indigene and opinion leader in Tangale land, I have a duty and responsibility of promoting peace in the land, hence my decision to go an extra mile to apologise and beg the Governor and the Muslim community in Billiri, who have been hurt the most, to forgive and bear with the situation – I cannot in anyway support violence as solution to any problem, especially in Tangale land. Once again, I strongly condemn this violence.
To put the record straight, the peaceful protest that led to this violence started on Wednesday 19th February, 2021. It was carried out by Tangale women, who were demanding that the state government announce the new Mai Tangle. On Friday, the protest was hijacked by mis guided few, who decided to act in the way they did. So, there was no way CAN will take responsibility for organising the peaceful protest, nor the violence that followed.
As CAN leader in the LGA, I call on all Christians to continue to pray and seek the face of God, for His intervention and His peace to reign in our land.
Rev Joseph John
Billiri LGA, Gombe State