The Kaduna State Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has commended Governor Nasir El-Rufai’s government’s decision to safe the 110-year-old St. George Anglican Church, Zaria from demolition.
The CAN Chairman in the State, Rev. Joseph Hayab made the commendation on Saturday following Friday’s clarification by the Director-General of the Kaduna State Urban Planning Development Agency (KASUPDA), Ismail Dikko that the Church won’t be touched because of its historical value.
The Nation learnt that KASUPDA had served the 110-year-old St. George Anglican Church, Sabon Gari, Zaria, the seven-day quit notice which it claimed was a directive from governor Nasir El-Rufai.
Following Thursday’s alarm raised by the CAN, the KASUPDA’s boss reversed the eviction order on the Church.
“The Church will remain base on its historical value…while the market source for expansion elsewhere,” the DG had said.
The CAN Chairman commended the state government for listening to the yearnings of the people by reversing its earlier decision to halt any demolition plan on the church.
Hayab noted that democracy could thrive only when government harken to the cry of the people it governs.
The CAN leader said, “We commend the government for this act. What we are saying is that govt should remain a listening government. Democracy thrives when government listens to the people but when government don’t listen to people, people think negatively about every action it takes.
“What we are doing is simply to remind government that we are not at war with them. We are just raising alarm; we are just another added eyes for them to see and know what is happening to people.
“So, if they do good, we will clap for them but if they don’t, we will tell them that something is wrong and that people are crying.”
The chairman, however, pleaded that the DG’s reversed order be documented for future references.
He said, “but we want to quickly draw their attention to three things – that our cry about the quit notice and the clarification or response on it shows that the DG knows about it and therefore not made. It was a true quit notice.
“We want them to document the response by the DG so that their officials when they come in future, we will show them the document by them. So that it won’t just be a mere paper statement. If they do that, we will appreciate them.
“The last one which we feel strongly about is when they said we don’t have valid document; we are saying probably, they have not checked their records well. But we have already instructed the Church that by Monday or Tuesday, they should go with their valid documents to reconcile so that in the future, we will not be saying someone is wrong when in the real sense, he is right.”