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Shiites threat should be taken seriously – Feranmi

File Photo: Army-Shi'ites clash in Zaria, Kaduna State
The President Nigerians United Against Terrorism, Mr. Jude Feranmi, has warned that Nigerians must not take the threat posed by Shiites lightly. 

He made this known as he led other members of the group at the launch of a campaign to discourage terrorism and religious extremism in the country, which held yesterday, in Lagos and Abuja simultaneously.

Feranmi disclosed that he made this call because in the aftermath of Shiite attack on the operatives of the Nigerian Army, they issued a video in which they purportedly threatened to unleash mayhem on the entire Nigerian state, whose authority, like Boko Haram, cannot be recognized.

His words: “Nigerians must unite to defeat any form of extremism in the country. The campaign is a watershed in citizens’ contribution towards creating a secured Nigeria that is not at the mercy of terrorists. Do not be disappointed that we do not have anything tangible to show you as you would have witnessed at the launch of a new building, product or any other thing with physical attributes.

“The campaign is driven by social media activists, bloggers and other well meaning Nigerians that are committed to a safe and united country. In addition to what we are doing here today, we have resolved to launch street rallies in Owerri, Imo State and Port Harcourt, Rivers State against threats of terrorism to our country in pursuit of our determination that Nigeria remains peaceful.

“The launch is a pointer to the world that Nigerians have collectively resolved to defeat every content of Boko Haram and their building cells, adding:

“This is our contribution towards dismantling the terror group’s mystic. Pro-actively, we are also acting to prevent the Shiite Sect from remaining on the path of extremism. We are committed to ensuring that the Shiite Sect is not allow to militarize as being currently pursued by some of its leaders.

“This is Nigeria, our constitutionally secular Nigeria. No group of persons or individual should again contemplate taking the nation through the horrors unleashed by Boko Haram again in the name of religion. We must at this stage commend President Muhammadu Buhari, whose purposeful leadership heralded the containment of Boko Haram terrorists in record time and will facilitate their eventual defeat. The information available in the media and from people who have visited places that used to be hot spots indicate that displaced victims of the insurgency are now returning to their towns and villages to rebuild their lives with support from the Federal, State and local governments.

“Even with the uplifting news, we cannot however afford to shut our eyes to emerging threats of extremism from the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, which also goes by the name of Shiite Sect. Available information and trend shows that the terrorists are now allegedly regrouping under the leadership of the sect’s leader, Mr. Ibrahim El-Zakzakky, a Kaduna State-based Islamic scholar. We strongly believe this should not be dismissed as an issue for the Army alone to handle. The Federal Government needs to act now.”

Feranmi explained that the launch underscores the essence of Nigeria’s unity and its supremacy over every form of worrisome terrorism, stressing that as the war against Boko Haram insurgents is being won in the North East of the country, the consciousness of Nigerians must be awakened to every other form of extremism that might crop up again as opposed to in 2009 when lack of vigilance allowed terrorism to gain roots.

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