United States President, Mr. Barrack Obama has been put under fresh pressures to designate the Boko Haram Sect as a Foreign Terrorists Organization (FTO).
Addressing a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington DC on Tuesday, the US Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CANAN) noted that such designation would send a serious signal to the political and financial backers of the group, who currently enjoy complete impunity not merely from the government of Nigeria but also from the international community including the United States.
Speaking through its Chairman, Dr. James Fadele, CANAN said that the there was an urgent need for the designation because the group is sustained by the procurement of unbelievable amounts of heavy arms and weapons, clearly transported from country to country and certainly funded by some fat pockets. "It is in fact critical for a critical investigation into likely backers of Boko Haram both in Nigeria and outside"
CANAN pressed further that if and when Boko Haram is designated as an FTO, all their top political backers would understand that the stakes are higher and they would face a wider net of justice, stressing that this action in turn would likely curtail them from funding the terrorists group.
According to the Christian Association, big names and political figures known to be supporting terrorism in any form should be made to face the music.
CANAN said: "We support the call by a number of Republican members of Congress, including Representative Peter King of New York, to designate Boko Haram an FTO"
"We are now calling on Americans to hold the State Department accountable for the current US policy on the issue of Boko Haram which discounts the lives of Nigerians Christians and is attempting to recast what is a terrorism problem as an economic one"
"Thousands of Nigerian-Americans will normally travel to Nigeria around Christmas, meaning that US airlines will be flying between both countries. We are concerned about a possible repeat of the Christmas Day church bombing in Nigeria by Boko haram last year"
Furthermore, CANAN asked the US to be very cautious about basing its foreign policy on such a one-sided and biased view, stressing that the Christians group would ensure that the views and perspectives of the significant Diaspora population here in the United States be considered as well.
Challenging the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan over the designation of Boko Haram, CANAN said that the federal government had given a very confusing response on the FTO issue due to its need to avoid embarrassment and affirm the sovereignty of Nigeria.
It also noted that the Nigerian government is no longer capable by itself alone to effectively check Boko Haram without some drastic international help including the designation of the terrorist group as a Foreign Terrorists Organization by the United States government.
Apart from Dr. James Fadele, others that were att the briefing included Pastor Laolu Akande who is the Executive Director of CANAN, Mr. Emma Ogebe, a representative of CANAN and a representative of the US House Committee on Homeland Security among others.