Rev. Pastor Joseph Hayab, Kaduna CAN Chairman
ChairmanThe Christian Association of Nigeria in the 19 Northern States and Abuja (Northern CAN), has condemned statements by the Nigerian embassy in Washington D.C, United State, accusing the Mrs.Rebecca Sharibu, mother of Leah Sharibu and three others for making “false” claims against the federal government.
The embassy, according to agency reports, had on June 30, 2019, protested against a recent event in the U.S. capital by Heritage Foundation, where some victims of terrorism and farmers/herders conflict in northern Nigeria allegedly made “false” claims were made against the federal government .
In a statement Tuesday in Kaduna, the vice chairman of Northern CAN, Rev. Joseph Hayab, described the embassy statement as insensitive, inhuman and irresponsible, urging the federal government to sanction the embassy staff who made the statement and apologise to the Rebecca Sharibu and others for saying their painful experiences were false.
The Heritage Foundation had
on June 11, 2019, invited Rebecca Sharibu, mother of Leah Sharibu; Alheri Bawa Magaji and Napoleon Adamu, victims of violence and insecurity to Washington DC to share their experiences.
According to him, the Nigerian Embassy in the protest letter, by one Mohammed Suleiman, Senior Counsellor/Head of Chancery to the Ambassador to the U.S. claimed that the four victims, including Rebecca, whose daughter, Leah Sharibu is still being held captive by the Boko Haram terrorists, gave “false and uncorroborated allegations about their experiences” at the event.
Hayab said for the past one year, Leah’s mother has been in ceaseless pain and trauma, crying for help for the release of her daughter, stressing that such utterances can only come from people without human feelings.
He called on the federal government to do everything possible to ensure the release of Leah.
Hayab added that Nigerians know that the terrorists released other girls that were abducted with Leah, but refused to release her because she refused to convert to Islam.
“How could any humane and sensible person described such experience as false!
This is a woman that has been crying out for help for the release of her daughter, what we expect from that embassy staff is to console her, to calm her down and assure her that government is doing everything to get her daughter” Hayab said.
His words: “This statement coming from the Nigerian embassy in the U.S is insensitive, inhuman and irresponsible and we called on the the federal government to sanction the embassy staff and apologise to the Rebecca Sharibu and others for saying their painful experiences are false.”
He said the federal government or the ministry of Foreign Affairs must take action against whoever issued that statement, adding that “these are the kinds of people that are creating disaffection in Nigeria and making people think bad of our country.”
Hayab noted that such statement seemed to confirm insinuations in some quarters that“there is a lie going on in this government.”
“If this woman has been crying out for help in the past one year and all you should say is to assure that something is being done to ensure the release of her daughter.
“But to say that she lied is an insult. The federal government must compel that embassy staff to apologise because I don’t think the federal government asked him to make that statement.
“Even if the federal government asked him yo do that, then they should apologise because it is an assault on people who are facing persecution in a country that is facing security challenges. Leah’s mother has a right to cry out and express her fears the way she wants.” He added