The Catholic Laity Council of Nigeria (CLCN), has called on the Church especially Catholics to carry arms and defend themselves from the rampaging terrorists who have targeted the Church and priests to annihilate them.
CLCN said since the government has proven it cannot protect its citizen, the only option is for the body of Christ to rise to occasion and protect her existence from a calculated genocide being perpetrated by religious fundamentalists.
Speaking in a statement sent to our correspondent on Thursday, June 29, 2022, the National President Catholic Laity Council of Nigeria, Sir. Henry Yunkwap, decried the deteriorating insecurity leaving the Church and Priests as soft targets.
He said, “We repeat, any government that cannot provide security for her people indirectly tells them to defend themselves by whatever means they can.
“For how long are we to witness these barbaric acts of killing of our people and now our priests who have sacrificed all, not only to the Church but the society as a whole. We are indeed tired of calling the attention of the government on what is incontrovertibly their primary responsibility”.
It would be recalled that less than a month ago the Laity in a press briefing condemned the June 5, 2022 unprovoked brutal attack on Catholic worshippers on Pentecost Sunday, right inside the Church in Owo Ondo State, which left over 40 unarmed worshippers including women and children dead, and many more wounded.
The Laity in the briefing had called on the government to as a matter of urgency arrest the perpetrators and address the issue of insecurity in the nation.
“However, while waiting for government response, the situation keeps deteriorating as the Church and Priests are now the soft target of these dare devils”, Yunkwap said.
He continued: “Unfortunately, even now, many Nigerians, including priests, are still with their abductors. We strongly believe that this government is too intelligent not to know what is happening; as such they owe Nigerians an explanation as to what is happening and why the Catholic Church and priests have become targets?
“To our fellow Catholics and indeed all Christians and men and women of goodwill, these are indeed perilous times in the history of our dear nation; therefore, we must rise to the occasion and begin to match words with action.
“We must demand accountability from our leaders; they must be seen taking action against this evil murderers, rather than merely sitting at their comfort zones issuing condolence messages.
“The Council sympathizes particularly with the Bishops, Priests and the Laity of Kaduna and Auchi Dioceses who lost their priests in the hands of these bandits.
He prayed to God to console all families who have lost their dear ones as a result of the senseless killings in our land.