October 24, 2020

The Presidency has reacted to the allegations by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) about the refusal of the Federal government to pay the required ransom to secure the release of abducted Chibok school girls some of whom are still in Boko-haram custody.

According to a State house press release signed on Wednesday by Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President on Media & Publicity, the presidency faulted leadership of CAN for engaging in “disinformation which can further divide Nigerians.”

Adesina stated that “Media reports quoted CAN’s Director of Legal and Public Affairs, Kwamkur Samuel to have said inter alia: “Nigerians need to know, if they have not known the reason why the Presidency could not pay ransom to rescue Chibok girls. It is because 80% to 90% of the girls are Christians. The reason why Dapchi girls’ ransom was quickly paid and they were returned is the discovery that most of the girls were Muslims except Leah Sharibu who is still in captivity.”

He recalled that, “When the media in August 2018 quoted a United Nations Report alleging that the Federal Government paid a “huge ransom” for the release of the abducted Dapchi schoolgirls on March 21, 2018, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, immediately disputed the report, insisting that no ransom was paid, “little or huge.”

“We urge CAN to desist from disinformation which can further divide Nigerians. The letter and spirit of the Holy Bible do not support discord, which CAN’s allegations are liable to cause.

“The Christian body need not be antagonistic to every attempt by the administration to move Nigeria forward, before it can champion or defend the Christian faith.

“President Muhammadu Buhari made it very clear in 2015 that if ransom needed to be paid to free the Chibok schoolgirls, he would pay. That is a testament to his commitment to get the girls back.

“Notwithstanding our different faiths, we are all stakeholders in the promotion of peace in our fatherland. And the Holy Bible enjoins us to, “Seek peace, and pursue it,” the statement reads in parts.

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