From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Kaduna State has advised government institutions in the state to be sensitive to religious matters.
The State CAN Chairman, Rev John Joseph Hayab, stated this in a statement available to the media in Kaduna yesterday Hayab also said the association frowns at the decision by Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) for asking Christians students to pay dues of other faith.
“It is in light of the above that CAN Kaduna is calling on all institutions of government to respect religious sensitivity and be neutral in accordance with the nation’s constitutional provision of religious freedom,” it stated.
According to the statement titled, ‘Government Institutions Must Stop Acts that can Trigger Religious Tension Among Students in the Nation’, CAN said that government institutions must be seen to be neutral in the way they handle their admission processes and in the content of their admission letters.
“CAN Kaduna State frowns at a situation where Christians students are asked to pay dues that are for religious organisations that are not their faiths. Such an abnormally has led to the following message which has gone viral.
“Islamization or not, come to ABU Zaria and verify,” it quoted from those raising the fears.
He explained that began when the university allegedly made Islamic law a compulsory course for Christian diploma students.
“Newly admitted 2019/2020 Post Graduate admission captured Muslim Students Society dues in its break dawn (MSS dues N1000) compulsory payment for all Christians.”
“Even though the attention of the management of ABU was brought to the above misnomer and correction has since been made, but the mistake should not have occurred in the first place,” it added.
Kaduna CAN said that besides, although the error was observed and corrected the refund to Christian students who had earlier paid the dues was still a clouded matter.
“We must not repeat mistakes or act in a way that breeds suspicion and doubt in the minds of citizens.
“The agencies of government that are responsible for checking, correcting and enforcing sanctions on those guilty of these breaches must be seen acting appropriately,” it concluded.