Buhari: We will not let anyone subject Nigeria to unnecessary religious stress

• Said of evil people behind recent attacks on churches

• Wishes will be brought to justice

• Urges Nigerians to come together in prayer against cowardly assailants

Deji Elumoye

Yesterday, President Muhammadu Buhari reacted to recent incidents of attacks on churches in Ondo and Kaduna states and vowed never to let anyone subject the secular nation to unnecessary religious stress.

The president, who has called such acts by some disgruntled elements of society unacceptable, however, has laid the blame at the doorsteps of the wrongdoers, saying that evil people were behind these despicable acts.

He therefore called on all Nigerians – Christians and Muslims – to unite in prayer against the cowardly perpetrators of these evil acts.

In a statement released by his spokesperson, Mallam Garba Shehu, Buhari pointed out that from the Owo tragedy two weeks ago which shook the nation to the core, to the killings and kidnappings, over the weekend Last, in Kaduna State, it was clear that there was a design by wicked people to put the country under religious strain.

According to him, “Our religious freedom, our diversity, is what makes Nigeria great. It is this diversity that makes Nigeria strong. This is why the enemies of Nigeria seek to destroy it, by pitting us against each other. We won’t let them. The nation will not be distracted or divided by these blatantly planned and politically motivated criminal attacks.

“Authors are cowards; weak and wicked men with guns killing, in cold blood, unarmed women and children in their places of worship.

After noting the starkness of the contrast between the actions of these hateful cowards and those of true Nigerians in the aftermath of Owo’s assassination, the President observed that “on seeing the crowds of Nigerians rushing voluntarily to donate blood after the attack, crowding into the local hospitals, even in mourning, I was proud of my country. I was filled with hope.

“As for the cowards, they will be punished for their crimes. We will bring them to justice. Rest assured that the full might of Nigeria’s formidable security and intelligence forces is involved in this endeavor.

“For now, I urge all Nigerians to come together in prayer – whether Christian, Muslim or of any of our major religions – let us keep the victims and their families in our hearts and minds.

“Let us show the cowards who seek to divide us along religious lines that we will not be divided. Let us show them that Nigerians will continue to cherish what we share while respecting each other’s differences. Let us show them that Nigerians will never be bullied by cowards, extremists or terrorists,” he concluded.

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