Christian Group Raises the Alarm over Safety of Sharibu

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Kayode Fasua in Abeokuta

A group, International Christian Conscience Initiative (ICCI), has tasked the federal government to verify afresh if Boko Haram’s Christian captive, Leah Sharibu, is still alive.

ICCI raised the fear of Sharibu’s wellbeing following what it described as a recent distress call “by a lady charity worker held hostage by the Boko Haram, who said, ‘the world should come to my aid so they won’t kill me as they killed Leah Sharibu.’”

Speaking in a chat with THISDAY in Abeokuta yesterday, the Global Coordinator for the ICCI, Prof Olakunle Macaulay, said: “We have every reason to find out the truth in the expression credited to this abducted charity worker who was captured by Boko Haram in the Adamawa location of the Northeastern part.

“It is now one year and 10 months that Leah Sharibu has been in captivity for committing no offence, other than that she would not renounce her Christian faith.

“What is her sin? Christians should see it as a slap on their religion and the federal government too, which had been exchanging prisoners with insurgents should extend the same gesture to Sharibu.

“Even a bigger country like the United States exchanged prisoners with terrorists to save the lives of their innocent citizens,” Macaulay averred.

The eighty-two-year-old Macaulay, who is also the National President of Association of Christian Theologians (ACT) in Nigeria, particularly deplored what he described as the passive role of the Christians Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the efforts to secure the release of Sharibu.

“If Sharibu has not been killed she will be two years in captivity come next February. What serious step has the CAN taken over her issue?” he queried.

He lamented that rather than attend to things of utmost impact on the Christian body in Nigeria, the CAN had deviated from its roles as it has now resorted to patronising politicians.

“The CAN has the moral responsibility to react to anything or advise but not to be concerned with individual interests.

“Why should the CAN President, for instance, go and pray for the victory of Governor Yahaya Bello in the build-up to the last Kogi governorship election? Is that part of the role of CAN in protecting the Christian body?” Macaulay asked.