2023: Sultan, CAN Sign Peace Pact In Washington D.C.

The Sultan of Sokoto, Mohammed Sa’ad Abubakar III, and Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, have signed a peace pact to de-escalate religious tensions and ensure peaceful and secure atmosphere in the nation, ahead of the 2023 elections.

The peace accord was signed at the International Religious Freedom Summit 2022, organised by the Global Peace Foundation and 70 international human rights and religious freedom organisations in Washington D.C.

While the Sultan, who doubles as President-General of the Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, was represented by Prof. Yusuf Usman, the apex Christian body was represented by its immediate past President, Rev. Samson Ayokunle.

In a statement in Abuja, yesterday, Ayokunle said the leadership of the umbrella Muslim and Christian organisations pledged to continue to work together, avoid violence, embrace dialogue and remain committed to building resilient communities free from fear.

He added that the two religious bodies also promised to embrace a vision of a common humanity and speak publicly of hope for Nigeria’s peaceful and bright future.

The statement read: “This is a difficult time in Nigeria, with ever-escalating security crises and an overwhelming loss of trust in government. And unfortunately, so much of the crisis in Nigeria has had a religious context.

“I recall the horrifying death of Deborah Emmanuel Yakubu murdered by a mob because of allegations of blasphemy.

Likewise, the shocking attack on the St Francis Xavier Catholic Church on Pentecost Sunday that left so many dead. And nearly every day, there seems to be another priest kidnapped or killed.

“At the same time, I know that there are so many across Nigeria, Muslims and Christians alike, who abhor this violence and only want to live in peace with their brethren of other faiths as we have done for so long.

“The Sultan of Sokoto is one of those men, and I thank him for how he swiftly condemned these kinds of attacks.

“We will only build a stronger Nigeria that is able to tackle these urgent ones that are destroying our country from lack of security, accountability, and corruption, to conflicts between different peoples and faiths, to hunger and the economic situation, if we religious leaders determine together to truly lead our people.”

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