- Category: Politics
- Published on Thursday, 11 March 2010 03:28
- Written by Admin
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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo insisted Wednesday that this week's explosion of violence that claimed at least 200 lives is not driven by religious tensions between Christians and Muslims -- but by ethnic, social, and economic problems.
In Sunday's violence near the central city of Jos, Christian villagers said a mob armed with guns, knives and machetes killed and burned at will, leaving a trail of death and destruction. The attack came in the same area that 150 Muslims were killed in January.
In an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour, Obasanjo said, "If you have one group or a community that has land that's been encroached upon by another community or even by itinerant cattle farmers, then the people who lay claim to the land will fight back."
"If there are job opportunities in an area, and persons believe they are indigenous to that area, and (are) not getting enough out of the jobs that are available, they will fight those who are getting the jobs," Obasanjo said.
Obasanjo said he's convinced the conflict in the oil-rich nation does not have religious roots, because Nigerian religious leaders have come together and deliberated on the problems in Jos, which lies on a faith-based fault-line between Muslim dominated northern
The former president also said it will be very dangerous if the acting president of
Obasanjo said the whole episode with Yar'Adua is unusual. "I think ... the way it was handled by his handlers and the way it's been couched in secrecy and shrouded in mystery is strange. Somebody said it can only happen in 'wonderland'