Kaduna Banditry: We’ve Shut Over 200 Churches, Lost 23 Pastors In Four Years – CAN

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has said that over 200 churches were shut down and 23 pastors killed as a result of frequent attacks by bandits in some parts of Kaduna State within the past four years.

The Chairman of the CAN in Kaduna State, Reverend Joseph Hayab, disclosed the figures during a confidence-building meeting with Christian leaders from the 23 Local Government Areas and the state Commissioner of Police, Musa Garba.

“Let me say this to you Commissioner that over 200 churches in Kaduna have been shut down. The Baptist have over 115 churches shut down from Birni Gwari to Chukun and Kajuru, the churches are no longer there.

“When you go to many churches now you will see many pastors who come from churches that have been shut down because they cannot continue, that is the kind of situation we are facing.

“ECWA can tell you hundreds of their churches, Assemblies of God, the Catholic Church and many other churches. So, we are forced to shut down because of insecurity in Kaduna State, the Kaduna CAN Chairman said.

Other speakers at the meeting tasked the police commissioner to match his words with action by going after the bandits and also consider sanctioning religious leaders who engage in hate sermons and speeches.

Banditry and terrorism have impacted on communities in Kaduna State in various ways, with hundreds of innocent lives lost and property worth millions of naira destroyed, including places of worship.

This is in addition to the huge humanitarian crisis created by thousands of internally displaced persons, whose means of livelihood were also disrupted by activities of criminal elements.