Tuesday, January 13, 2009
The HAWK Project
The recent spate of child-witchkilling in south-south Nigeria is leaving sour taste in everyone's mouth and a source of serious concern to many Nigerian, and non-Nigerian alike.
This continued insanity in religious disguise has been a source of serious concern to many of us who are humanists. For, we are baffled, at the rate at which many parents and guardians are turning their children and wards into the streets in the name of their being witches.
The situation is being fueled by the religious jobbers, many of whom are pentecostal pastors. These evangelists maurading and 'exorcising' in 'God's' name have claimed the fact that over 2.3. million of 3.9. million population of Akwa-Ibom state, a south south state in Nigeria, are witches. Based on this incredible claim, their business of deliverance have been thriving profitably. Now, they charge between N30,000 and N200,000 as the exorcising fee, mostly for child-witches. To exorcise the witchcraft spirit, these evangelists usually beat starve and torture these suspected child-witches and old women.
Based on my recent visit to Esit Eket, Eket, Ibeno, Mbo and Etinan local governments of Akwa-Ibom state, I have come to realise that indeed the problem need to be tackled headlong. The data gathered from the one-week fieldwork is revealing: over 215 children and about 52 old women have been accused of witchcraft between 2005 and 2008. About 12 child-witches and 4 Oldwomen have also been killed, directly and indirectly, through stoning(2) and tacit abadonment in sickness. This to us, as humanists and concerned citizens of the world must not be allowed to continue unabated.
In fact, it is time we all pick up the gauntlet to fight against these oppressive, vindictive and exploitative pentecostal jobbers such Bishop Sunday Okon of Spiritual Church, Ibaka, Mbo LG, Pastor Alfred Akpe of Christ Apostolic Church, Ikpa, Esit Eket, and Pastor Akpan Samuel of the Christ for the World Mission Inc., Ibeno.
Lets Speak Up!!!!!!