I’m not afraid to die ― Retired Major-General Lekwot

Major General Zamani Lekwot(retd) who was condemned to death by a tribunal following the Zango Kataf sectarian crisis of 1992 on Sunday said that he is not afraid to die.

Lekwot while responding to the call made by the Sharia Council of Nigeria that the federal government should revisit the death sentence passed on the retired General and four others, said his life is in the hands of God.

The sharia council had argued further that revisiting the 1992 upheaval would bring lasting peace in the volatile area which has claimed thousands of lives.

However, speaking to journalists shortly after the interdenominational service, Lekwot, a former governor of old Rivers State, said only God could determine his life and not those craving for violence under the current democratic dispensation.

Lekwot noted that all genuine religious leaders were supposed to preach and love, wondering why the Council were preaching hate and division in the country.

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He added that what the country needed at this moment was genuine tolerance regardless of ethnic or religious affinities and not hatred.

To the Shariah Council, Lekwot said his life is not in their hands but that of God, declaring that  “I have nothing to say.

My life, like everybody’s life, is in the hands of God, not the detractors. The detractors and evil forces that are preaching hate, trying to throw spanner in the works, will fail. May God exposed them in all ramifications.”

When asked if he was afraid of the threat to his life, the former Commandant of the Nigerian Defence Academy said, “afraid”? I am a trained soldier and a trained Commander. Am not afraid to die.

Lekwot added, “All genuine religious leaders are supposed to preach peace and love. Why are there people preaching hate and division?

“The Zango-Kataf they are talking about, Yes, the killings were unfortunate but the dispute was the relocation of the market. Some people didn’t want it. At the end of the day, the Commission of Inquiry was set up; recommendations were made and the Mua’azu Committee’s recommendations had been implemented.

“Those that are reverting to it are clever by half. What we need in our country is genuine tolerance and live and let live. We have lived together for a very long time.

“Now, by what they are saying, they are now telling the reason why some armed foreign bandits are imported to destroy the country.

“How does that (revisiting his case) address the issue(of killings in Southern Kaduna). So, what is happening in Kaduna and by extension to other parts of the country  are a bad omen to our unity and stability.”

Among those who attended interdenominational service/protest, was the President of CAN, Dr Supo  Ayokunle which held at the Evangelical Church of Winning All, Narayi, Kaduna on Sunday.



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