Kaduna state governor, Nasir El Rufai has shut down with immediate effect, two churches, a seminary and a church-owned hospitals and secondary school, all located in Saminaka, Lere local government of the state.
Vanguard reports that he shut the churches down today, Wednesday, September 16, in order to guide against violence among factions of the congregations whose leaderships’ positions he described as, “principally to preserve their personal interests with little concern for the common good, and the peace and security of Kaduna State”.
The statement effecting the new update mentioned Theological Seminary of Northern Nigeria, (TSNN), Shalom Comprehensive College, Assemblies of God Church, AGC, Nmbare all in Saminaka, Assemblies of God Church (Jerusalem) and AGC Evangelist Hospital as affected bodies.
“The Kaduna State Security Council at its 15th meeting, held on the 15th September, 2015, deliberated on the leadership crisis in the Assemblies of God Church, AGC, Saminaka District, Lere local government area of the state. The council discussed this matter in the context of preventing threats to the peace and stability of the State. The Council noted that the leadership crisis has led to disintegration of order in the church, and raised tensions between the followers of the rival camps.
The crisis has also widened to the students of the church-owned school and seminary, who are now split and divided on factional lines. The Council reviewed previous efforts made to resolve the crisis. It noted that these were aborted by those involved in the leadership tussle, principally to preserve their personal interests with little concern for the common good, and the peace and security of Kaduna State.
The Council unanimously agreed that if left unchecked, the growing tension may degenerate into total breakdown of law and order in the said area, with the potential to spread to other parts of the state. Therefore, the Council has taken steps to preserve the peace. It has unanimously directed the immediate closure of the following: Theological Seminary of Northern Nigeria, (TSNN) Saminaka. Shalom Comprehensive College, Saminaka Assemblies of God Church, Nmbare, Saminaka and Assemblies of God Church (Jerusalem) Saminaka AGC Evangelist Hospital, Saminaka. As a result of these measures, those who may be affected will be admitted into government schools or hospitals, if they exercise the option.
The Council also directed that the status quo with regard to farmlands, houses and other assets of the church be upheld pending resolution of the leadership crisis, which is a matter before the Supreme Court. Kaduna State Government wishes to reiterate that it will not tolerate the use of religion and ethnicity to cause crisis in the state. The government has also announced that it will prosecute anyone, no matter his or her standing, that is implicated in fomenting crisis in whatever form in the State”, the statement read.
This is coming same day the governor led some officials to burn forfeited drug exhibits in Kufena area of Zaria in the state. According a statement made available by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), the burnt drugs are said to have a street value of N133 million.
Just recently, the Kaduna state deputy governor, Bala Barnabas Bantex, revealed that N24 billion was recovered by the state government in 423 bank accounts in the state as a result of the government’s decision to begin remitting its earnings into a Treasury Single Account (TSA).