The Primate, Methodist Church, Nigeria, His Eminence, Bishop Ola Makinde, has described the call by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Saad Abubakar III for amnesty for Boko Haram members as disappointing.
Makinde spoke on Friday during the Holy Communion Service of the 51st annual synod of the church at Methodist Church, Ekotedo, Ibadan. The Sultan last week Tuesday demanded “total amnesty” for members of the sect in order to promote peace in the country.
However, the clergy said, “I am disappointed in the statement credited to the Sultan of Sokoto that terrorists should be granted amnesty. “How can you grant amnesty to a faceless group or a set of criminals? Traditional and spiritual leaders should be custodians of morality in the land.”
He said it would be wrong to equate the Boko Haram insurrection to what happened in the Niger Delta. According to him, the people of Niger Delta fought against environmental degradation and resource control. Makinde said, “What is Boko Haram for? Are they fighting for groundnut or cow resource control?”
“We must be very careful that we don’t have religious war in this country. You can imagine it is being revealed that 83 per cent of the oil blocs are owned by the northerners. They want political and economic powers combined.” He added, “What is killing this country is corruption.
In 1993, I said unless the nation tackles the issue of corruption it would kill everything that is noble in our country. That is what we are seeing in the politics of our nation today.” Meanwhile, former Minister of Youth Development, Senator Akinlabi Olasunkanmi, has expressed support for President Goodluck Jonathan’s decision to reject appeals for amnesty for the Boko Haram members.
The former minister told journalists in Ode-Omu, Osun, on Sunday that the amnesty could not apply to the insurgents for now. Olasunkanmi said the Federal Government could not grant amnesty to an unidentified group of people, whose activities had caused ripples in the polity.