Okija Shrine: NGO Asks Police to Extend Probe to Faith Clinics, Miracle Centres

AS Nigerians continue to express shock over the discoveries at Okija shrine, an Ibadan based Non-Governmental Organisation, Centre for inquiry (CFI) yesterday asked the police to extend their investigation to several faith clinics and miracle centers where people are allegedly held in bondage and servitude under the guise of religion.

The executive director of the centre, Mr. Leo Igwe at a news conference condemned the barbaric killing and sacrifice discovered at the Okija shrine saying "we wish to state that ritual killing or blood money can't give anyone wealth or security.

"Reason, science and reality bears us out. We commend the Nigeria police for their courageous initiative and urge them not to relent in their efforts to stamp out these dastardly acts.

"We appeal to them to extend the investigation to all shrines throughout the country including faith clinics, miracle centers, holy mountains, prayer houses and all places where people are held in bondage and servitude in the name of religion, culture, ritual and tradition".

The Executive Director of the centre however, said, "we advise that these investigations be carried out in manners that do not violate human dignity or infringe on the human rights of individuals to freedom of religion or belief as guaranteed in the Nigeria constitution".

Mr. Igwe while calling for the separation of religion and legal system in Nigeria said "Okija shrine episode is a clear example of what could befall a nation that leaves its legal and justice structure to the whims and caprices of priests and clerics". He also stressed the need for the federal Government to support science-based education instead of superstition-based instruction and religious indoctrination.

"We enjoin all Nigerians to abandon Pseudo-science and embrace science, to leave occultic non-sense and cultivate rational inquiry, critical thinking and technological intelligence so that Nigeria can grow", Mr. Igwe said.