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CAN Sues Universities in Katsina State Over Religious Freedom Violations

CAN Sues Universities in Katsina State Over Religious Freedom Violations

In a bid to challenge what they perceive as a violation of their religious freedoms, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Katsina State branch, backed by the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) International, has taken legal action against two universities in Katsina State.

The lawsuit alleges that these universities have unjustly prohibited Christian groups from conducting fellowship meetings and worship on their campuses.

The legal advocacy group, ADF International, stated on Monday, outlining the basis of the suit. According to the statement, the universities, one state and one federal institution, imposed bans on Christian religious activities back in 2017 and 2022, respectively, and have since refused to rescind these prohibitions.

One of the universities, not explicitly named in the statement, reportedly enforced the ban by locking all worship and fellowship centres on campus, effectively preventing Christian students from accessing these facilities. Meanwhile, Muslim student groups have allegedly been allowed to hold gatherings in university-constructed worship spaces.

Despite Katsina being a Muslim-majority state, both universities reportedly have significant percentages of Christian students and faculty.

A Christian student from one of the universities expressed their frustration, stating, “We only want to be able to freely gather and worship as Christians on equal terms with other religious faiths. It is wrong that our universities are preventing us from exercising our most basic, fundamental rights.”

Sean Nelson, the lead attorney for ADF International on the case, emphasized, “No person should be discriminated against for their faith, and the actions of these state and federal universities are unjust.”

CAN echoed these sentiments, condemning the universities’ actions and calling for global condemnation of religious discrimination.

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of the students, is grounded in the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.
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