31 January 2011

Nigeria: 'Genuine Muslim-Christian Relationship Possible in Plateau' - Archbishop

Jos — The Archbishop of Jos Diocese Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigma has said that despite what is going on in Plateau State at the moment, genuine reconciliation between Muslims and Christians is possible.

Kaigama who spoke at the formal opening of the inter-faith youth vocational training center at Hai-hong, Bokkos, which he built, said the Catholic church was committed to dialogue with other religions because it believes that it is possible for people with different religious persuasions to live together, stressing that the church believes strongly that it is better to "light a candle than to cause darkness."

Kaigama said the aim of establishing the center is to combat idleness and push out religious fundamentalism in youths.

"In addition to vocational skills, we train the youths here to cultivate the culture of appreciating one another irrespective of their religious doctrines and traditions," he said adding that a very important rule in the school is that no one changes his or her religion or tries to convert another.

Plateau governor, Jonah Jang said mutual coexistence among religious faith is a major challenge globally but that it should serve as a wake up call for all to deliberately work towards building a harmonious society. He said one of the threats to peace and harmony in Jos is religious intolerance saying a situation where religious leaders, teach and preach among adherents while parents encourage their wards not to relate with their peers of other faiths portends danger for the society.

Jang disclosed that the special security arrangement known as Operation Rainbow has been approved by President Goodluck Jonathan and would soon take off to bring back lasting peace and stability in the state.

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