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Killings in Kaduna, Owo churches politically motivated – Garba Shehu

The Presidency has said that the recent religious attacks in Owo, Ondo State; and Kaduna State were planned by individuals who seek politically benefits.

Over 40 people were killed in St. Francis Catholic Church Owo, Ondo State when yet-to-be-identified gunmen stormed the church premises on June 5.

Also just this month, two churches, Maranatha Baptist Church and the St. Moses Catholic Church, both in the Kajuru Local Government Area of Kaduna State, were attacked by terrorists on June 19, killing no fewer than 32 worshippers.

In a statement signed on Wednesday by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the Presidency argued that the attacks were designed to set various regions of the country against one another.

The statement titled ‘Recent spate of church attacks unacceptable’ read, “From the tragedy in Owo two weeks ago that shook our nation to its core, to the killings and kidnappings just this weekend in Kaduna State, it is clear that there is a design by wicked people to put the country under religious stress.

“President Muhammadu Buhari believes that our religious freedom, our diversity, is what makes Nigeria great. It is this diversity that gives Nigeria its strength. That is why Nigeria’s enemies seek to destroy it, by putting us against one another.

“We will not let them. The nation will not be distracted or divided by these obviously planned and politically motivated criminal outrages. The perpetrators are cowards; weak and wicked men with guns murdering, in cold blood, unarmed women and children at their places of worship.”

The Presidency also vowed to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“As for the cowards, they will be punished for their crimes. We will bring them to justice. Rest assured that the full might of Nigeria’s formidable security and intelligence forces are involved in that endeavour,” the statement added.

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