The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Jos North local government has begged Muslim and Christian leaders to stop inciting people to violence.
According to a statement issued in Jos on Wednesday by CAN chairman Polycarp Gana and secretary Ezekiel Noam, the group also condemned the killing in the Yalwa Zangam community.
Unknown gunmen had invaded the community Tuesday night, killed scores, and torched many houses. CAN advised religious leaders in Plateau to desist from making comments capable of causing violence.
“We condemn these killings and attacks on innocent citizens of Yalwa Zangam community in their homes. This is sad, unfortunate, and worrisome,” the CAN statement said. “We call on clerics in the state to desist from making inciting statements but preach peace, understanding, and solidarity among the people.”
It urged religious leaders to stop making provocative statements “at this time that we should be making efforts as leaders to assuage frayed nerves by words from the holy books which should build,” rather than worsen the situation.
It praised security agencies for their effort toward ensuring sustainable peace in the state and urged them to do more.
While commiserating with families affected by the violence, the religious group advised Christians to be watchful and prayerful and urged them to defend themselves against unprovoked attacks.
It also urged residents to strengthen community surveillance efforts and report suspicious movements to security agencies.