PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, painted a gloomy picture of the membership and activities of the deadly Islamic sect, Boko Haram, saying the group has successfully infiltrated the three arms of government at the federal level.
This is just as General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, challenged Nigerian Christians and their Muslim counterparts to work hand-in-hand to find a way to eradicate the menace of Boko Haram and other terror groups in the country.
The President also identified the twin evils of greed and selfishness which are the single largest breeders of corruption, as the greatest challenges militating against the nation’s economic progress in the 21st century, saying the greed of one man can lead to the corruption of a whole nation.
Speaking at an inter-denominational church service to mark the 2012 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration at the National Christian Centre, Jonathan decried the membership spread of the group within the North, but vowed to stem the menace in no distant time.
He explained that some members of the sect were in the executive, legislative and judiciary arms of government as well as the armed forces, adding that the situation had made it more difficult to combat the nation’s security challenges headlong.
Jonathan described the present security situation in the country as worse than the civil war experience, insisting that “this is a particular time when the country has major security challenges. There are explosions everyday, people are dying and are being killed daily without any reason.
“It is a period we also call on the armed forces, including those that have retired, to join hands with their colleagues that are still in service and government to see how collectively we can protect our nation. I believe we will overcome our immediate challenges. The situation we have in our hands is even worse than the civil war that we fought.
“During the civil war, we knew and we could even predict where the enemy was coming from. You can even know the route they are coming from, you can even know what calibre of weapon they will use and so on. But the challenge we have today is more complicated.
I remember when I had a meeting with elders from the North East and some parts of the North West where the Boko Haram phenomenon is more prevalent, somebody said the situation was bad that even if one’s son is a member, one will not even know.
“That means that if the person will plant a bomb behind your house, you won’t know. That is how complex the situation is. Our security services are trying because as the president, I know what they are doing. Nigerians may not appreciate their efforts especially when you know that we are underpoliced. We have a police force that is about 300,000 in number.
“I assure Nigerians that we shall get over it. We are meeting everyday and we are planning. We are going to increase the strength and the capacity of the security services to confront the modern challenges we face.”
Okoh seeks support for Jonathan
Also, yesterday, the Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Most Rev. Nicholas Okoh, called on members of the Armed Forces to at all times stand by President Jonathan’s sincere agenda to transform the country, saying their undiluted loyalty was all that the President required to lead Nigeria out of her present socio-economic and political challenges.
In a sermon entitled, “Patriotism at its height,” Okoh declared that as a mark of patriotism, the country’s armed forces owed the President who is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, and Nigerians the national duty to be loyal to democratic institutions at all times.
He said: “Patriotism demands that we all speak, work and pray for peace in our country. It is, therefore, very important that men, women, innocent civilians, military and all should work for peace.”
Adeboye tasks Christians, Muslims on Boko Haram
Meanwhile, General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, yesterday, urged Christians and their Muslim counterparts to work hand-in-hand to find a way to eradicate the menace of Boko Haram and other terrorist groups in the country.
Adeboye made the appeal through one of his Special Assistants on Administration and Personnel, Pastor Johnson Odesola at the church national headquarters in Ebute Meta in Lagos after a special prayer session for the peace of the country which doubled as the church’s New Year thanksgiving service.
The cleric also said it was imperative for Nigerians to be security conscious in their activities as he assured the citizens that God would not abandon the nation and her citizens at this crucial period because Nigeria is strategic to God end-time agenda and therefore He is in absolute control of our affairs.
In his words: “Christians and Muslims in Nigeria should cooperate to eradicate the challenges caused by Islamic sect, Boko Haram.”
Nigerians should know that no normal human being would decide to bomb fellow Nigerians. I think these sets of people are foreigners who determined to cause problem in our nation. Therefore, we should not only blame the problem on northern elite alone but we must as stakeholders in the Nigerian project look out for a way forward for the nation. In addition, Nigerians must be security conscious.”
Mr. Jona, fish dem out