Federal Government has failed Nigerians and Christians should rise and defend themselves……… Rev Fr Hyginus Aghaulor

www.odogwublog.com brings you this interview with Rev Fr Hyginus Aghaulor, Chancellor and Diocesan Secretary, Catholic Diocese of Nnewi. Fr Aghaulor, immediate past Director, Communication of the Catholic diocese of Nnewi was worried on the incessant killings of Christians by Terrorists parading as Fulani Herdsmen and in this interview with ODOGWU EMEKA ODOGWU, Fr Aghaulor speaks on the way forward out of the mess. Excerpts:


What is your take on the incessant killing of Christians, including two priests in Benue?

It is really unfortunate because the primary duty of governance is supposed to ensure that security of the lives and properties of the people are secured, but presently it not working. What you people call herdsmen should be called what it is supposed to be called and that is terrorism. I find it difficult to understand why we should still be calling them herdsmen while they carry Ak 47, moving in every nooks and crannies of this country, killing and maiming people and burning houses and yet nothing happens.
 They are carrying out an agenda and that agenda to my own mind, is very clear. The agenda of Islamising Nigeria. Don’t mind the issue of skirmishes when people cry very loud and you hear that they destroyed one mosque, they are targeting the central of the North that waged them from completing the dreams of Othman Dan Fodio of keeping Quran into the Atlantic Ocean. That is the target and as soon as they finish that, they continue coming down to the south east and South- South. So it’s really unfortunate and until we call it by name, it will not stop.

What of government silence on the spate of the killings?

It is very clear if somebody is carrying out an agenda that you are comfortable with. Why should you criticize that openly? Here is what is called tacit silence. It is when you support something and decided to keep mum. It is a way of saying, go ahead. And it becomes worrisome when you look at the architecture of our military that supposed to be protecting people.
 You find out that about 80 per cent of them are from a particular ethnic group and we were told  that they have selected the best it is only in that ethnic group that you can find the best in the military to defend the country.  And this is the result we are getting. People have called for people to resign and nothing is happening.
So, the silence speaks louder than talking. It is a way of saying am ok with it. And it is not only talking, people that are supposed to be doing those things and they are not doing that are supposed to be removed. I don’t believe the sign language. Remember that the IG of police was asked to relocate to the place of action but he didn’t and the president says he didn’t know and till today nothing is happening. The same IG of police that was invited to come and explain himself has not done that and nothing is happening and we are keeping silence. That is a way of saying well done boy, you are doing well.

So what do you think is the way forward?

People like TY Danjuma has called for people to defend themselves and self defence is something that is accepted internationally. You have to defend yourself and I am equally in that frame of mind that people should defend themselves.
Unfortunately, people are now targeted. They said they should surrender their arms both registered and non-registered ones. People are being disarmed whereas people that are carrying all those sophisticated weapons are still moving around and nobody is targeting to disarm them.
Who is fooling who? People who have their licenses to carry those little light weapons are being disarmed. And we begin to wonder what is wrong with the intelligent apparatus of this country. If you are not able to pre-empt all these things, somebody supposed to be fired for not doing his or her work and I wonder what intelligent they are gathering.
The worrisome is when the Chibok girls were kidnapped, they came back, the video clip showed that people were clapping and cheering those that kidnapped their daughters. It does not happen anywhere and it goes to demonstrate that there are more that meet the eyes than we are seeing.
People clapping for kidnappers and they were given heroic welcome. So there is something fishy, we are not telling ourselves the truth. The way forward is that people should know that government as of now is not willing to defend them. People should trust their God and do whatever they can do legally to defend themselves. But if you are sleeping and thinks that the police are taken care of you, you are deceiving yourself. With what we have seen in this issue of herdsmen.

Secondly, the issue of restructuring  that goes with decentralizing the police  is the only way forward for Nigeria, if not, Nigeria is already heading towards anarchy and it is getting closer and closer every day. Anarchy sets in when people do not trust that government is protecting them.
So, people calling for self-defence is a revelation of people getting tired and people losing fate in the ability of the government to defend them and It will reach a stage when if something is done immediately that is not just only the people defending themselves, that people will begin to form parallel army to defend their towns, houses and villages. And if we get there, it will be worse than what we are witnessing now.

Can we say that the plan to Islamise Nigeria is the reason for keeping Leah after freeing other Daptchi girls?

It is part of the issue because she refused to be converted so they decided to keep her. So, it’s obvious that the people that are kidnapping or abducting don’t abduct them for the sake of abduction but for religious purposes. So when we talk about herdsmen or whatever, the sooner we know that they are doing that for Islamising purposes, the better for all of us. They are holding her because she refused to be converted. The people going to the Church supposed to be Fulani herdsmen, killing worshippers early in the morning. Now you begin to wonder, are they going into the Church by that ungodly hour of the day that their cows are there. What actually are they looking for? So, going there to kill shows that they are only masquerading as Fulani herdsmen but actually, they are terrorists.

What of the arrest of worshippers at Kanu’s house?

It is a total distraction. When government is not focused. We have people that are kidnapping and we have the herdsmen that are terrorizing people. We have criminals here and there that are trapped and then, the only thing that is worrying the commissioner of police is to arrest people that are praying, people that are harmless. No gun, no stick and they just went to arrest them for praying.  While people that are carrying gun, sacking people in courts as witnessed in the  High court in Rivers state are walking free. Nobody is arresting those ones and clamping them down but people that are praying. It is only a distraction.  It is losing focus.

Catholics all over the world just celebrated World Communication Day, what is your message to journalists?

The Pope is worried concerning the spread of fake news with the social media. Fake news is racking the society. People do photo shopping and put somebody’s head against another and telling a different story. And Unprofessional may see those kind of things and think it’s true.  People from the comfort of their homes, manufacture stories and send them out, causing disaffection in the society and all this kind of stuff is bringing unrest in the world and braking the world order. 
Fake news is doing the work of snake in the garden of Edem that was peaceful but Satan put sin in order to cause confusion. That is what actually the fake news is doing and Pope is calling on journalists to be professional in their reportage. They should be investigative and call fake news what it is, that it is fake and people should not patronize that.
 It is when journalists are professional and journalism investigative that it promotes human dignity and affairs in the world and it brings peace and world order. That is why Pope is calling on the journalists in the whole world to distant themselves from fake news because people are now making business out of fake news. In United States they are still battling. There are certain companies now that are making billions out of fake news. So, fake news is something that the world should join hand to fight. So that journalism becomes professional as it should be.



How can the spread of fake news be checkmated?

First of all, journalists must begin to investigate because it is some of the journalists that spread fake news. Many are working very hard but there are few that are purveyors of this fake news. They just get it without balancing the news without finding out results before distribution. Being investigative means going extra mile to get the news behind the news rather than copying and pasting.
When news breaks, journalists should go there to find out exactly what happened and balance the report. So, that is the fundamental thing and people themselves should begin to ask questions when they hear something. People should stop digesting everything they get through the net, social media as if they are gospel truth. People should become more circumspective when they get these things. When these two things are taken care of, God will help and people making business out of fake news should equally ask themselves certain questions. If people are making money out of people’s woes, causing disaffection in the society, it is an ill gotten money.
 It is not a good money and there is a law of karma for such people. They may pretend to have it but they will one day regret their actions. I advise such people to stop such illegal business and go into more profitable thing. So, these three aspects will help in reducing fake news in the society.

You are aware of the ecological problem in the state and at the last count there are over 1000 live erosion sites in the state, every year FG map out ecological fund to address this issue but the money are nowhere to be seen, what is your take on that?

Ecological fund, just like many other fund of the federal government is unfortunately not being used as it should. But having said that, the issue of ecology should not be left in the hand of government alone. People in the society, we must endeavour to help ourselves.
We drink sachet water and all manner of things and drop it on the gutter and when we block the drainage system, we are causing problem. We should begin to take care of the drainage channels for easy flow of water when it rains. We should begin to have plans that should equally help to wage the erosion. We the society should be more proactive. There are certain things we must do for ourselves without waiting for the government.

On the part of the government, I appeal that those money should be used appropriately instead of stuffing them in Swiss banks or stealing them with the hope of their fourth or fifth generation to use that. If things continue the way things are moving now, some of them may not be alive to enjoy the ill-gotten wealth. If there is a revolution in Nigeria now, those generations they are stuffing the money for, may not even be there to enjoy the money.
So it is better to use that money to develop the society. Let us plant the necessary trees where we should plant them instead of cutting the possible trees we see in taking care of the erosion and government to play their part by using the money appropriately.

Federal Government has failed Nigerians and Christians should rise and defend themselves……… Rev Fr Hyginus Aghaulor Federal Government has failed Nigerians and Christians should rise and defend themselves……… Rev Fr Hyginus Aghaulor Reviewed by Odogwu Emeka Odogwu on Saturday, May 26, 2018 Rating: 5

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