Int Day for religious violence victims: Forum wants prompt prosecution of perpetrators

The Interfaith Dialogue Forum for Peace (IDFP) has urged the Federal Government to intensify security response and ensure prompt prosecution of persons found culpable in perpetrating violence against others.

They made the call on Thursday in Abuja at the commemoration of the “International Day for Victims of Violence Based on Religion and other Beliefs” and donations of food and household relief materials for the Internally Displaced Camps (IDPs) at Malaysia Garden, Apo and New Khuchigoro Games Village Camp, both in Abuja.

The event was organised by the Interfaith Dialogue Forum for Peace (IDFP) and the King Abdullah bin Abdul’aziz Centre for Inter-religious and Intercultural Dialogue (KAICIID), Vienna, Austria.

The Co-chairmen of IDFP, Alhaji Kunle Sanni and Bishop Sunday Onuoha, urged Nigerians to remember the IDPs across the country and not abandon them to their plights.

The Co-Secretary of IDFP, Alhaji Ibrahim Yahya and the co-chairman, Central Coordinating Council (CCC), IDFP, Amir Muhammad Jameel Muhammad, who spoke on behalf of the co-chairman, donated the relief materials at the two IDP camps.

Alhaji Ibrahim Yahya, speaking at the Malaysia Garden, said the donation was part of the forum’s two week activities to make UN International Day.

Yahya said the gesture for the maiden celebration of the UN Day celebrated on Every August 22, was necessary to amplify the need for response to the plight of the victims who were often forgotten.

He urged government and Non-Governmental Organisation (NGOs) for urgent response to the plight of IDPs for rehabilitation and resettlement.

“The IDFP stands in solidarity with all victims of violence especially those perpetrated in the name of religion and encourages all religious adherents to seek the truth, peace and justice as enshrined in the teachings of the Holy Books. IDFP also wishes to encourage all religious adherents to respect the rule of law and fundamental rights to freedom of worship and religious participation,” Yahya said.

Mallam Jameel on his part, said the essence of the donation was to commiserate with the IDPs.

He said, “We have come to commiserate, empathize with them and to show them that we are with them and that we are craving for peace in this country and we will continue to support them.”

He urged religion leaders to always preach peace and do the right thing in order to promote peace.

Also, the Co-Secretary of IDFP, Pastor Joshua Ibrahim, urged religious leaders to continue to assist and provide relief materials to victims of crisis with the belief that such would not necessarily make them to change religion.

Joshua said that would rather make them to know that God is in every situation and that it would also help to douse the tension in their hearts.

The Chairman of IDP Camps, Malaysia Garden, Apo, Mr. Chakule A. Lawal, who received the visitors and the donated materials on behalf of the IDPs, commended the forum for their gesture, saying it was gladden to see both Christian and Muslims coming together to address their problems.

He said, “We are very happy, we are grateful and we pray that very soon the issue of violence and insecurity in the country would be a thing of the past. We however wish to return to our home land. There is no place like home.

“If government can return us to our village it will be better for us than to be here without our children going to schools.”

Also, the leader of the New Khuchigoro camp, Alhaji Usman Adamu, who thanked the two religions for caring for them, said it was not their wish to be at the camp for five years but that it was due to the protracted Boko Haram crisis.


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