By Paul Obi in Abuja
A former President of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) and Archbishop of Jos, Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama, Monday said the recent killings in Plateau State perpetrated by Fulani herdsmen is a shameful projection of Nigeria’s image.
Kaigama, who is on a working visit to Canada and the United States, said in a statement that the killings have continued to paint Nigeria negatively across the international community.
He said: “I am very far from Nigeria but the sad and bad news from Plateau State are not far from me. I hear that herdsmen are on the prowl again and there is bloodshed, murder of infants, youths, men and women in huge numbers in our beloved land of ‘peace and tourism’.
“The flagrant and despicable taking of human lives and the continued destruction to homes and means of livelihood is a disgrace to humanity and a shameful projection of a negative image of Nigerians.”
Kaigama explained that “the gruesome murders have robbed me of the enthusiasm, energy and pride with which I came to Canada and America”.
“I came boasting to the various audiences I had – whether in church prayer gatherings or discussion groups, at media interviews or during interactions with officials of Foreign Affairs Ministry, about the huge potentials in Nigeria and how even in the midst of violence caused either by Boko Haram, militant herdsmen or the yet to be identified ‘foreign invaders’, peace is very possible as we are determined to sustain the culture of civilised conduct and peace,” he said.
The archbishop added that while he is “still making frantic positive efforts for my country Nigeria, inhuman and diabolical killings have taken place in parts of Plateau State. What do I tell the friends I have convinced to come, the youths I interacted with telling them how beautiful Nigeria is?” He asked.