What happened when Apostle Johnson Suleiman visited the Headquarters of the Department of State Services (DSS) on Monday in Abuja has been revealed by an undisclosed source who spoke to Vanguard.
According to report, the Northern Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Yakubu Pam, was the Christian leader who brokered peace between the cleric and DSS that Monday night.
The DSS treated Apostle Suleiman with respect and pleaded with him not to heat up the polity with his messages considering the large number of his followers.
According to the undisclosed source (as seen on Vanguard), the operatives of the DSS told Apostle Suleiman that his “message can be exploited by mischief makers to cause serious problems for the country and its people given your mixed background and large followership and we want you to assist the Federal Government to find a lasting peace to the crisis in the land instead of doing anything that could further heat up the polity.
“Sir, we also want you to realise that there is hunger in the land and idle hands can easily cash in on any statement to cause mayhem in the country, thereby drawing back the hands of development and progress in the country.”
The report also noted that the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, had called the Northern Chairman of CAN, Rev. Pam, notifying him of their plan to arrest Apostle Suleiman over his alleged inciting statement.
However, Rev. Pam, told the IG to give the church sometime to settle the situation in a way that will not heat up matter considering the current state of situations in the north like the Southern Kaduna crisis.
“The negotiation, we gathered, was supposed to involve the Northern CAN chairman and the National President of PFN, Rev. Omobude, in the spirit of ‘what happens to one of us affects us all’, but the DSS’ attempt to arrest Apostle Suleman in Ado Ekiti which has let loose the avalanche of protests across the country put paid to that enterprise.
“So when the DSS decided to invite the clergyman, the Northern CAN boss continued his peace mission by leading Apostle Suleiman to the DSS headquarters where he briefed the DSS Director-General of the efforts he had earlier made to resolve the matter peacefully because of the situation in the country security wise,” the source told Vanguard.
Rev. Pam also reportedly told the DSS that the trouble in the North was too much and would make no sense to escalate the problem.
“So the delegation told the DSS boss that there was already an agreement with the IG to address his alleged hate speech. It was at that point that the Northern CAN chairman was said to have told the DSS boss: “The country already has a lot of challenges and we have manage the issue with tact,” stressing that he personally came to make sure peace prevailed.
The source noted that what was emphasized on was “over and above the challenges confronting us a nation. And the DSS boss agreed with him and that was how the deal was brokered in so short a period.”