Friday, September 9, 2011

A Call To Action After the Abuja Attacks, by Esther Ibanga and Khadija Hawaja

Nigerians woke up to a rude but not unexpected news of violence visited on the United Nations building in Abuja on Friday 26th Aug 2011. It is no longer news that global terrorism is right on the doorsteps of Nigeria. We join the millions of shocked peace-loving people within and outside Nigeria to condemn in strong terms the senseless and wicked killings of innocent lives and the destruction of property that achieves nothing in gaining any support or sympathy for the violent ideologies of the perpetrators of this crime.

The violence in Abuja, the nation’s capital, is just a build-up of what had been going on in Jos, Plateau state, where we have consistently been decrying violent extremism in this country. We only hope that this will be a wakeup call for the government of this nation and every peace-loving human being to be more proactive and vigilant in curtailing this monstrous cancer called terrorism.

Our sympathy goes to all victims and their grieving families at this time and we pray for God’s comfort at this time of pain.

We also call upon the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to step into the 21st century in its rescue efforts and equipment as we decry the 4ft wooden ladder that was used to bring out a wounded woman, stripping her almost naked in the process. It is also a show of shame that the national hospital did not have the facilities to treat victims and they had to be flown abroad.

If we would not learn from history, we become history.

-Esther Ibanga, Senior Pastor, Jos Christian Missions

The bombing of the UN office in Abuja was quite alarming. It took me by surprise because it was something I never contemplated, not even in my wildest dream.

The bombing is condemnable and inhuman. It can never be justified.

I do not subscribe to violence of any form as a way of expressing dissatisfaction or anger. There is a better way of doing so without resorting to violence.

We must all fight against violence so that the World will be a safe place for you and I!

-Khadija Hawaja, Chairperson of the Plateau Muslim Women Peace Forum

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