Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has inaugurated an Interfaith Preaching Regulatory Council to guide religious preaching in the state.
The governor noted that religion should not be a trigger for violent conflict in the state. According to him, some adherents even question the right of others to exist, let alone practice their faith or live wherever they wish.
El-Rufai recalled that the late Air Vice Marshall Usman Muazu enacted the Religious Preaching Edict in 1984 to address the matter.
The governor who spoke at the inauguration of the council added that “subsequent military governors amended the edict to vary the penalty imposed for violations of its provisions.”
He stated, “This is a law that has always been in the statute book of Kaduna State but it has not been implemented faithfully. We decided in 2016 to review this edict and subject a revised law to the scrutiny of an elected legislature for the first time.
“We have now a religious preaching law, and we are determined to do our best to help stamp out the poison from the negative practice of religion.
“Religion is a relationship with God, not a bargaining tool for economic or political favours, and certainly not an excuse for murder, arson, destruction of property and other violent crimes against people who worship and pray differently.”
“The pioneer members of this Interfaith Preaching Regulatory Council have an arduous but most important task of ensuring that those that are the leaders of faith and those that preach do not set our people against one another, and that faith is not practiced in ways that deliberately and consistently inconvenience others.”