The South East zone of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has said it has proof that radical Islamist sect Boko Haram plans to kill southerners by selling poisoned suya.
Anglican Bishop of Enugu Diocese, Bishop Emmanuel Chukwuma, alleged that the sect, responsible for a spate of bomb attacks targeting Christian worshippers in the north, is bringing the war to the south.
He claims the Boko Haram and its sponsors have declared Jihad against the southern part of the country, occupied predominantly by Christians, and says the sect has deployed some 6,000 insurgents to the South to prosecute the war.
“We have information and documents to show that this is a Jihad being sponsored and we have our documents to show where they have dispatched 2,000 people to prepare for Jihad to South East, 2,500 to South-South and about 2,000 to South West,” Chukwuma said
The Association claimed the sect will carry out mass killings in a stealth manner, coating suya dishes with poisoned powder. He alleged that a plan is afoot to import the poisoned suya condiment and use it in preparing the popular meat dish, a specialty dish prepared widely by northerners.
He said: “There is a powder that is now being imported which they will spread on suya and after two weeks it will start eating your liver and other organs. We have gotten that information also”.
Bishop Chukwuma raised the alarm at a press briefing held after the association met to discuss the killing of Christian worshippers in the north in a spate of Sunday bombings in different parts of the restive region.
He claimed to have names of sponsors and documents that lend veracity to his allegations and said he obtained the intelligence from a converted Boko Haram insurgent.
The Bishop said the association has the information well in hand and “at the appropriate time we shall strike and we are waiting for them.”
In the meantime, however, he said “we are warning our people to be careful of suya because we have now heard that they will start poisoning people through suya. They know the suya they give themselves in the North and suya they give to the people in the South. So people should be careful of suya”.
Force with Force
The Bishop went on to say that the association has its informants and is ready to “match force with force right now”. He widely condemned security operatives, the police force and the House of Representatives of being ineffective in protecting the lives of Christian worshippers who, recently, have become sitting targets for insurgents.
The recent bombings in Kaduna, targeting three churches, sparked reprisal attacks on Sunday that left carnage in its wake. At least 52 were killed, hundreds injured and property – including Churches and Mosques – destroyed.
A 24-hour curfew, which was initially imposed on Sunday and later relaxed on Monday, is back in effect in the state as Muslim youths allegedly embarked on counter-reprisal attacks on Tuesday.
Now, the association has raised fears of an insurgence in the south east. While calling on the government to “step up a serious security strategy”, the Bishop said Christians in the south are ready to do battle. ”
“Christians in the South are ready to face them squarely because we heard that they have infiltrated this place, especially Enugu. We are prepared for war- physically and spiritually against any form of attack on the church. Time has come for reprisal because nobody can stop us from worshiping our God”, the South East CAN leader said.
He says there will be no stopping them “because the time has come for reprisal”.