The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has condemned the burgling and burning of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Root of David Parish, by unknown arsonists.
The RCCG church was razed in the early hours of Monday, Feb. 13, at Apiawe village, Deidei, a suburb in Abuja.
Rev. Jonah Samson, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), CAN, Chairman, told journalists on Friday in Abuja that the association condemned the action of the hoodlums.
He described the incident as barbaric, adding that it was a painful thing to the Christian community.
Samson called on the Federal Government to take proper action on what had happened by arresting the culprits and bring them to book.
According to him, this will go a long way to avoid further tension between the two major religions in the country.
“I see this as provocation and it is so painful. You don’t need an Angel to tell you that a lot of destruction has been done here.
“We are hoping that the law will take its course in a situation where you find people who do not have respect for the law.
“To be very frank, issues like this must be tamed and people who have done this should be arrested and they should face the full wrath of the law.
“We expect that the government will take action and ensure that they fish out those who are responsible for this act and then with that we will be satisfied.
Mr Daniel Kadzai, National President, Youth Wing, CAN, also called on the government to take the issue of attacks and demolition of churches very seriously, saying it might get to a stage where youths will want to revenge.
Kadzai further advised Christian youths across the nation to always maintain peace and to be law-abiding citizens.
“I sincerely want to call on the government to take the issue of church burning, church demolition and attacks on Christians serious.
“We do not want to reach a point where we might not be able to control our youths. I will still call on our Christian youths across the nation to remain calm.
“The Bible enjoins us to live in peace with one another. We have remained peaceful and law abiding in the face of provocation. “I will keep appealing to the government, whenever such things occur, we just hope that Christian youths will not be provoked to a point of taking laws into their hands.
Pastor Oladele Stephen, Senior Pastor of the church said that the church was not in contention with anybody on the land where it was built.
Stephen explained that houses around the church were demolished during El’Rufai’s era except the church.
According to him, four weeks ago the suspected arsonists burgled the church and went away with six ceiling fans, two standing fans, one big generator, microphones, amplifiers and one speaker.
“We reported to the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) on Monday around 10a.m but they have not made any arrest instead they were asking us whether we suspect anyone.
“The DPO told us that we should just go and assured us that God will help us to recover all the property.
Newsmen report that the church had existed in the community for the past 15 years and had enjoyed harmonious relationship with the residents.