From Gyang Bere, Jos

The Christian Council of Nigeria (CCN) has blamed the increase in the number of migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPS) in Nigeria on the unabated security challenges facing the country.

The President, Christian Council of Nigeria (CCN), Most Revered Benebo Fubara-Manuel, made the observation this on Tuesday while declaring open a capacity building workshop for religious leaders on vulnerabilities of people on the move (Migrants/IDPs), held in Jos, the Plateau State capital.

He said the training, organised in collaboration with the World Council of Churches (WCC) through the Ecumenical HIV and AIDS Initiative and Advocacy (EHAIA), also trained humanitarian workers and government officials on providing support for migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria.

The Reverend decried the increase in the number of migrants and displaced persons who are scattered all over the country, particularly in the Northern, on Nigeria’s internal security crisis.

‘Today, the world is being faced with terrorism; [in] our country, Nigeria, [there is] insecurity, ranging from kidnapping, banditry, armed robbery, insurgency and what have you.

‘All of this is forcing people to move from one location to another in search of livelihood and safer abode. As a church, we have decided to put together this training workshop so as to acquaint religious leaders and other critical stakeholders with the needed knowledge so as to attain to the needs of such category of people.

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‘So, what this exercise aimed at pursuing justice and the rights, and show solidarity to the disadvantaged, ensure a balanced and equal society, support those in need and promote a community of caring for others,’ Rev Fubara-Manuel said.

He explained that the knowledge from the exercise would enable religious leaders and other humanitarian workers give the necessary care and support to the disadvantaged in the society.

The General Secretary, CCN Rev Evans Onyemara, said the workshop would dwell on the role of the church in ameliorating the sufferings of displaced persons in the communities.

Onyemara, who decried high rate of poverty in the country, said that the training would equip religious leaders with ways to compliment government’s efforts in bettering the lots of the masses.

‘Nigeria is passing through a lot of challenges and people, particularly those who are displaced are suffering because their welfare has been totally neglected.

‘In such situation, the church cannot abandon them. We try in our little way to come to their aid.

“So, this workshop is to further train our religious leaders and others in addressing the hardships of the common masses,’ the Reverend said.