Catholic Archbishop calls for action to stop hate sermons in churches

Catholic Archbishop calls for action to stop hate sermons in churches

Archbishop of Abuja Archdiocese, Cardinal John Onaiyekan, has expressed concern over hate sermons by some clerics in the country

He called for the arrest of religious clerics who incite violence through their sermon.

The archbishop in an interview with newsmen in Abuja, on the sideline of a workshop on preventing violence extremism in Nigeria, said that clerics who stand up on their pulpit in churches and incite members to kill other people should be arrested.

There is enough law, according to him to deal with reckless speaking in order to stop mindless violence in the country.

“There is enough in the law in Nigeria to curb reckless speaking, if somebody stands up on his pulpit in church and start inciting his members to go and kill others, he has committed a crime under the Nigerian Law, he should be arrested, which is not happening,” Onaiyekan said.

“They would say if you touch religious leaders there would be backlash. Let the backlash come for goodness sake, so that we can get out of all this mess.”

He asked security agencies to live up to their responsibilities to safeguard people from the excesses of people who do not realise that there is a limit to the freedom of worship and speech.

“We must learn from our past mistake, while we defend freedom of worship and freedom of speech, there is obviously a limit as to how far you can carry your freedom.

 “In Nigeria, we are free, because of that people claim to be bishops, Imams and religious leaders, they say whatever they like and they are not responsible to anybody,” Onaiyekan added.

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