Following a religion regulation bill that was recently passed by the Kaduna State House of Assembly, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the state has threatened to embark on legal action against the government.
CAN chairman in the state, Reverend John Joseph Hayab, while speaking on the bill on Saturday, said, “We are going to court over the illegal action of the former lawmakers in the state who hurriedly signed the Religious Bill into law hurriedly before they left.”
He ventilated that Christians in the state are not ready to submit to such a bill even if Governor Nasir El-Rufai assents to it.
Hayab described the bill as a breach of the fundamental rights of all Christians in the state which the constitution guarantees, adding that it’s being studied for immediate legal action in the court of law.
“I, as the chairman of CAN in the state or any official was not invited for any preliminary hearing by the State House of Assembly on the bill that the House hurriedly passed before it was resolved. And even the Interfaith Council which they claimed would regulate the activities of Churches and Mosques in the state, most of the members don’t understand what Christianity is, let alone regulating our religion.
“They cannot regulate both private and public evangelism of Christians. What is the essence of Christianity if we cannot evangelise both privately and publicly? The law cannot work. We will not accept it,” he said.
Hayab added, “I was in America when the news of the Assembly endorsing the bill was announced. Now that I am back, we are going to challenge the unlawful bill that the people of Kaduna rejected.”
He positioned that, “Even if the governor assent to the bill, we will challenge its legality. We will not accept anything that would trample on our fundamental rights to worship and evangelise. We will go to court and challenge it.
“And for the sake of religious harmony, the government of Kaduna should avoid anything that will bring disharmony in the state. We have had enough controversies and issues of insecurity. The government should not overheat the polity again.”