Security forces given 48-hr ultimatum to rescue kidnapped Catholic priests in Sokoto
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has given security agencies 48 hours to rescue two reverend fathers and many others kidnapped by terrorists from the rectory of a Catholic Church in Katsina under the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto.
The priests must be released unconditionally by security forces within 48 hours, according to the group, if for no other reason than to provide spiritual, psychological, and material assistance to the poorest of the poor in Katsina State.
HURIWA believes the security agencies have become completely overburdened and lack the resources to carry out their mandate, and wonders why President Muhammadu Buhari is so comfortable with inept security chiefs and police commissioners failing to carry out their primary statutory duties.
The Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, according to the rights group, is a very poor Diocese that primarily serves millions of economically disadvantaged citizens in the Northern States captured by the Sokoto Diocese, including Sokoto, Katsina, and Zamfara.
HURIWA also urged the Federal Government and the Katsina State Government to take immediate action to ensure that the frequent violent attacks and invasions of Catholic Church facilities in Katsina State are stopped.
The group said it suspects that there has been a well designed Jihad agenda put in place by Islamists and some foot soldiers of those against the existence of Christianity in the core North to use extreme acts of criminal violence and terror to dissuade the Catholic Church and other Christian denominations from establishing branches in what is presumed to be a stronghold of Islamic religion in Nigeria.
HURIWA’s position was part of a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko on Wednesday.
The rights group said it is therefore calling for a broad-based investigation to determine if indeed the Jihad against Christianity in the North has begun.
HURIWA said the primary duty of government is to protect the lives and property of the citizens just as the rights group emphasised the importance of doing everything within the law to promote and protect the fundamental human rights of citizens irrespective of their ethnic and religious affinities or orientation.
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