USA: John Kerry’s troubling visit to Nigeria’s Islamic leaders adds to the boiling cauldron of Christians’ claim of gradual Islamisation of the country – Tola Adenle

August 28, 2016

Faith, Nigeria, USA

Kerry at Sultan of SokotoUSA’s Secretary of State John Kerry, Leader of Nigerian Muslims, The Sultan of Sokoto & a Muslim governor, Aminu Tambuwal


The words credited to John Kerry about Sokoto: “a place of … tolerance & scholarship” are beyond baffling. Most Nigerians – all Christians, North and South, and Muslims in the South would disagree with Kerry.

Great to visit – a place of faith, tolerance & scholarship. Honored to be hosted by Sultan Abubakar.

 Retweeted over a million times and with more than a million likes would be credible mostly to Northern Nigerian Muslims – there are Muslims in the South but they are not of the fundamentalist types that are common in Northern Nigeria.

During his visit, Kerry commended Abubakar for his role in promoting religious tolerance in Nigeria.

As if the problems of Islamic extremism and terrorism in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey and elsewhere are not enough many of which the U.S. is caught right in the middle of are not enough, the US Secretary of State has been dealing with Moslems in Nigeria lately in ways that have angered the Christian community in the country.

Needless to say that President Obama, like everybody in the world, is aware that the problems of Islamic terrorism in other parts of the world have spread to Nigeria and is shaking the foundation of the country to its depth.

The  killing of Christians in Northern Nigeria in recent times have seen new audacity with the burning to death of eight students just last week, the latest in a long line of selective killings that happens on a regular basis which is very surprising  as Christians overwhelmingly voted for President Buhari, even though they  had reservations about him when he was campaigning in his third attempt to rule as civilian was based on his being known as an Islamic fundamentalist. Most Nigerians knew he could fight the corruption scourge and believed he won’t pursue governance that would be devoid of Islamic fundamentalism.

Here are a couple of the news reports on Kerry’s divisive visit to Nigeria during which he –

  • visited the head of Nigeria’s Muslims, the Sultan of Sokoto and all 19 Northern governors only three of whom are Christians;
  •  After Nigeria, Kerry’s next stop was Saudi Arabia
  • Christians were excluded from Kerry’s visit:
  • Kerry also met President Muhammadu Buhari who is also a Muslim:

Christian Association of Nigeria fumes over John Kerry’s meeting with Sultan, Northern governors; accuses U.S. of bias –

The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has accused the United States government of stoking ethnic and religious divisions in Nigeria, after the U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, visited the Sultan of Sokoto and northern governors …[]

Has the Sultan Palace become another State House, was Kerry invited by the Sultan? – Christian Association of Nigeria 

Kerry’s two day visit has attracted condemnation from Christian leaders who question his sincerity during the visit. Kerry, during the visit had only visited the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar III, met with the 19 northern governors, whom only three are Christians. At the Presidential Villa, where Kerry was hosted by President Muhammadu Buhari, met with select northern governors, which also irked critics on the selection process of his hosts …
Read more at:

When a top-ranking American diplomat visits Nigeria, one might imagine that their first destination would be the commercial hub of Lagos or the seat of the government in Abuja.

But when U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry touched down in Africa’s biggest Muslim country, he did so in Sokoto, a relatively small state that is closer to Niamey, the capital of neighboring Niger , than to Lagos …

With the claim that Kerry’s mission was to seek how to check Islamic terrorism, here are just a few questions that boggle the mind about this US diplomacy:

  • how come the “tolerant” Sultan did not seek Christian participation?
  • Is Buhari not aware of Christians and Muslims having worked together to seek an end to the Islamic murderers in the North?
  • Did the US think sending its Secretary of State to a small enclave ruler who heads Muslims in Nigeria could end the interfaith boiling situation borne of Islamic terrorism without including Christians?
  • Is America contributing to what ALL Christians see as the gradual forcing of Nigeria to Islamisation?


Many in Nigeria are wondering if the new approach to diplomatic by the USA in Nigeria should not be viewed in line with a documented opinion of the United States that Nigeria will soon break apart. The ire of Christians against the upsurge in massacres of Christians by different Northern Muslim elements: Fulani cattlemen; those who kill because of perceived disrespect by Christians against Prophet Muhammed … with nothing concrete done by government and Muslim leaders, is nearing boiling point.

Is America unaware of recent murders by Muslim cattlemen most prominent among which was the murder of 40 people of Nimbo community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu by Fulani herdsmen which led to this ultimatum:  “Leave our land now or… Igbo youths tell Fulani herdsmen”[]

As they’ve murdered in Eastern Nigeria homeland of the Ibos, they’ve shed the blood of many in Yorubas’ Western Nigeria homeland and in Northern Nigeria where there are also millions of Christians, many have lost lives and properties.

Is the United States of America’s President Obama ready to be one of the final triggers that would usher in the end of Nigeria as the USA has long predicted?

Mr. Frederick Adekunle, one of this blog’s regular readers, submitted the following on the growing religious strife in Nigeria and the security of lives of Christians, a short commentary that has John Kerry’s visit to the Sultan of Sokoto in view.


SUNDAY, AUGUST 28, 2016. 10:01 p.m. [GMT]

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6 Comments on “USA: John Kerry’s troubling visit to Nigeria’s Islamic leaders adds to the boiling cauldron of Christians’ claim of gradual Islamisation of the country – Tola Adenle”

  1. Faith Olasupo Says:

    I might be wrong but I’m of d opinion that it’s just a political propaganda to outwit the opponent party.They want the world to see the party as friendly to Muslims to gain votes.He might be canvassing 4 votes from USA Muslims thru countries’ leaders who can influence their people in USA for Hillary Clinton since their party is religious and immigrant-friendly unlike Trump that said he’ll send them all including Nigerians packing.

    I don’t think there’s anything to be alarmed at. Donald Trump may soon start visiting sets of people in different countries for support to actualise his dream as well. I stand to be corrected if I’m wrong though. I’m not for any of the two. I’m praying for peace to reign in Nigeria and the USA



    • emotan77 Says:

      I really do hope that all the signs should not be taken seriously, Mr. Olasupo. You do present an interesting argument that should not be dismissed but sending Kerry to Nigeria’s Muslim leader and then to Saudi in pursuit of votes for Clinton by American Muslims would surely be a heavy needless diplomatic investment for Obama.

      Thanks very much for your contribution.




  2. folakemiodoaje Says:

    Thank you for this piece. Nigeria issues. Sure, Secretary John Kerry is following some intelligence advice.

    The distrust is beyond religious line but it is the easiest one to pick on. Only last week was a news about northern christians who broke away from CAN to form their own with their own leader. They ‘lived’ with Ayo Oritsejafor for 5 years but they can’t seem to bear another person from the south and yet all claim to be followers of Jesus. So to come to the 3 northern governors at the meeting, it makes no difference to the way southerners are perceived.

    Perhaps Secretary John Kerry could have done better but I believe that in order for Nigeria to move forward we must look inwards.



    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Folakemi,

      I’m a firm believer in the need for individuals, like countries, do indeed have to look to themselves FIRST before looking elsewhere or blaming others, in finding solutions to their problems.

      It is very troubling, however, when countries that are often looked up to, employ methods that compound the problems of countries that look up to them wittingly or otherwise.

      On the schism among various faiths of Christians in Nigeria which is at the leadership level rather than among Christians, this can be traced to the greed that is most prevalent – though not limited – among the Pentecostal church leaderships. Oritsejafor was the last president’s go-to clergy that he used to wreak havoc so that when he became the Christians’ association – CAN – head, Jonathan could get any statement he needed issued on behalf of “Christians”; in short, his eminence – I do not know what high-falutin title the man of Nigeria’s god uses – could guarantee Jonathan the backing of the Christian Association of Nigeria. The Catholic Church in Nigeria pulled out of CAN because of the buying and selling of conscience that Jonathan enabled to get Oritsejafor as head of CAN; I’m not aware the Catholics rejoined the association and that says a whole lot because the Catholic Church – more than any of the other faiths – is, perhaps, the only Christian church that does not tailor its leanings on the side of any president but generally on the side of the country or the masses.

      By the way I’m a practising Anglican.

      Sincere regards,

      Liked by 1 person


  3. F Bakare Says:

    I wonder why we are so concerned about the Islamisation of Nigeria. I 100% believe that this cannot be possible and any attempt to put the country under Islamic contraption will never see a good day in the country. Any leader in his right senses will not attempt that.

    Many real and genuine Islamic scholars have come out severally to denounce that Boko Haram or any other terrorist group in the world are not carrying out their terrorist activities in the name of Islam. All atrocities being committed by these groups ranging from murder, terror, arson, rape, drugs to forceful conversion of innocent people to their so-called Islam are not in the tenets of the religion Islam as laid down by Allah and practised by Prophet Mohammed (SAW) and his followers.

    People should not entertain fear of making Nigeria a State under Islamic rule. It’s NOT JUST POSSIBLE.



    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Fatai,

      Thanks very much for this input which is consistent with your past stands on religious strife in Nigeria, especially considering you are devout Muslim which we cannot guarantee for many who parade themselves as good Muslims in Nigeria; ditto their fellow travellers – the “Christian” men of Nigeria’s god – money.

      Your para 1 says it all: any leader in his right senses … which is where lies the problem. Men – meaning of both sexes – are not often unfathomable once in power and the way Buhari has been handling the religious crises in Nigeria is baffling in its seeming halfhearted ways. The idea he’s come up with on the Fulani herdsmen is insincere and seems geared to using “federal” might to take over Southern land for cattle grazing for clearly profitable end for cattle owners, mostly Northerners.

      Secondly, and I know we’ve dealt with this on our forum and even here, all security posts – army, police, air force, prison … are in the hands of NORTHERN Muslims which, we in the South are all agreed on, is definitely different from SOUTHERN Muslims. For example, your belief that any sensible leader would never attempt to drag Nigeria into Islamic State is from a true Southerner whose religion does not becloud his reasoning. Remember that Babangida was the first to take Nigeria to OIC? I believe the country is still there but a final ratification was never done due to outcries that arose back in the 1980s.

      Point 3 concerns the reckless foreign exchange approval for over 200,000 Muslims towards the Hajj even as economic activities in the country are being greatly affected by foreign exchange constraints. While Nigerians were told the approval and set-aside for this had been done much earlier than the exchange crisis, the present situation would have been respected and those whose religious obligation called for it should have been made to source foreign exchange in the parallel market where business people have to source their needs.

      Finally here but definitely not all of the blinking red lights that points to Nigeria’s entry to the OIC is the cap-in-hand for loans – a full circle to Nigeria’s old indebtedness – which has seen Nigeria begging for loans from Saudi in addition to several sources.

      I’m sure the various outcries will have effect.




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