A religious crisis may be brewing in Saki town, headquarters of Saki West local government area of Oyo State, as adherents of the two major religions, Christianity and Islam, are treating each other with suspicion.
The Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, in the community, Dr. Emmanuel Okunola, accused the leadership of the Muslim community in the area of considering Christians as second class citizens.
He claimed that they considered the town as belonging to muslims alone.
According to him, the Christian community had continued to call for peace among the two religions but those of the other faith had continued to “push the Christians to the wall.”
The Shepherd, First African Baptist Church, Isale Taba, Saki, said whenever a Christian from the town was appointed into a position of authority, the Muslim community would kick against such an appointment and that it should be given to a Muslim.
He however lauded the Okere of Saki for rising to the task to nip the impending crisis in the bud, stating that the monarch at a meeting held with the leadership of the religious groups in the town, promised to set up an Interfaith religious committee with members drawn from the religious groups and security agencies.
Okunlola commended the security agencies in the town for being able to maintain peace in the community with the support of the three council chairmen in Saki.
The Emeritus Provost, Oke Ogun Diocese, Anglican Communion, Rev. Joseph Aderibigbe Adika, called on the leadership of the two major religions to work for peace and development of the town.
He called on all residents to see themselves as one in the eyes of the Lord, noting that a genuine worshipper would not work against the interest of his or her fellow human being irrespective of religious differences.
However on his part, the Chairman, Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, in the community, Alhaji Lawal Oroyinyin, denied that there was any religious crisis in the town, insisting that the community was peaceful like any other town in the state.
The Islamic leader maintained that a statement credited to the Okere of Saki that some elements were trying to foment trouble in the town could not have come from the monarch.
He said as the head of the Muslim community in the town, he could vouch that no muslim in the community was working against the interest of Christians in the town.
The Police Area Commander, Saki Area Command, Mr. I. O. Salaudeen, refused to speak on the development, noting that every report about security happenings within the command was available at the state Police Area Command, Eleyele, Ibadan.
However some residents while speaking on anonymity, called on the authorities to nip whatever misunderstanding that might exist in the bud so as to ensure that peace continued to prevail.