The Northern States Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) on Monday reacted to an allegation by the Christ Redeemers’ Union (CRU) that President Muhammadu Buhari was planning to install a northerner as CAN President.
Treasurer of the Northern CAN, Pastor Haruna Karatu said it would not be abnormal for a northerner to become CAN President, warning against accusing Buhari wrongly.
“There is nothing wrong with having a Northerner as CAN President; after all CAN started from the North. The Presidency of CAN is not for the South only.
“Buhari has nothing to do with CAN, it is just a blackmail by mischief makers who want to drag the name of the President into their gimmicks,” he said in Kaduna.
Similarly, the immediate past Chairman of the North-East CAN, Rev. Shuaibu Byal recalled that “CAN started in the north in 1964 and became national in 1976.
“Since then, Northern Christians have never shown interest in the leadership of CAN, apart from John Onaiyekan who is from Kogi State.
“All we do is to support anybody, in the believe that Christians are one. We back any president regardless of tribe or region.”
He pointed out that: “Obasanjo was President of Nigeria when Peter Akinlola became the President of CAN, both from Ogun State. Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor became CAN President from the Niger Delta region at the time Goodluck Jonathan was President of this country.
“So, it is unfortunate for any group to come out and say President Muhammadu Buhari is trying to install a Northern as CAN President. That is a divisive language and we don’t encourage such.
“We have Igbo people who became CAN chairmen in the Northern States. We supported Ayo’s emergence as President, so if one of us wants to succeed him, how is it a crime?” Byal quipped.