Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Controversial religious bill divides northern governors

Controversial religious bill
divides northern governors


state governors under the
aegis of the Northern Governors’
Forum allegedly unanimously endorsed the
controversial religious bill
– In the communique, the governors alleged
proliferation of sects and preachers in the
region and agreed to close down all
religious organisations that refused to be
licensed with the respective state
governments
– The agreement might not have gone down
well with some of the states, especially
those with large Christian populations
– Plateau state will have a second look at
the law and determine whether or not it
could be applicable to the state
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of was the first in
the North to propose the bill which will
regulate preaching across the state.
The controversial preaching bill was
allegedly unanimously endorsed by the 19
northern state governors on Friday, April 29.
However, This Day found out that some of
the governors might have dissociated from
it, noting that the peculiarity of their states
will not permit implementation of such law.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna

State was
the first in the North to propose the bill
which will regulate preaching across the
state. The bill that triggered mixede
reactions among religious leaders and
common people is currently under
consideration at the state House of
Assembly.
At the meeting, the northern state governors
under the aegis of the Northern Governors’
Forum endorsed the commencement of the
issuance of licence to preachers in the
region.
In the communique, the governors alleged
proliferation of sects and preachers in the
region and agreed to close down all religious
organisations that refused to be licensed
with the respective state governments.



However, the agreement collectively signed
by the governors may not have gone down
well with some of the states, especially
those with large Christian populations like
Plateau, Taraba, Benue, a, Kogi, Nasarawa
and Adamawa.
Plateau state has already begun to murmur
against such agreement because is out of
tune with the religious beliefs of the larger
population of the people.
Commenting on the development, Mark
Longyen, a special adviser on media to
Governor Simon Lalong, noted although every
state in the North was part of the
agreement, it should not be binding as each
state has its own peculiarity.
“It is true that Plateau state was part of the
agreement, but it is not binding. We will look
at the law again and domesticate it according
to the peculiarity, reality and circumstances of
the situation in Plateau state,” he said.

Meanwhile, Apostle Johnson Suleman and
Primate Elijah Babatunde Ayodele have
called on Governor Nasir El-Rufai to thread
softly on the issue of religion or risk being
consumed by God.