NIGERIAN JOURNALIST TO STAND TRIAL AFTER REPORTING ON CHRISTIAN ATTACKS
Nigerian Catholic journalist, Luka Binniyat, is set to stand trial on charges of “cyberstalking” after reporting on the inability of the Nigerian government to address the recent attacks targeted at Christians.
Picture: Nigerian Journalist, Luka Binniyat
Luka Binniyat was arrested last November for reporting on the attacks against predominantly Christian communities and the failure of the government to protect its citizens. Binnayat who was the Bureau Chief of Vanguard News till 2017, will stand trial on Sept. 6 on charges of "cyberstalking" and aiding and abetting the offenses of cybercrime, the charges that he has denied.
The Epoch Times’ Africa Desk Editor Doug Burton earlier attributed Binniyat’s arrest to an Oct. 29 article he wrote, titled “In Nigeria, Police Decry Massacres as ‘Wicked’ But Make No Arrests.” The article is part of the newspaper’s coverage of the deadly persecution of Christian farming communities in the African country that human rights advocates say has escalated to near “genocidal levels” in recent years as thousands have been killed.
Picture: Flag of Nigeria
According to Robert Destro, a law professor at The Catholic University of America and a former assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, "Binniyat’s arrest and trial are an attempt to silence journalists who speak out about attacks on Christians in Nigeria. No politician likes criticism, but most understand that a reporter’s job is to find the facts and report them honestly".
In his article, Binniyat pushed back on Kaduna’s Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affairs Samuel Aruwan’s characterization of an attack on Christian farmers in the state as a “clash.”
The Christian persecutions in Nigeria and around the world have been on the uprise for decades. These events especially in Nigeria have almost reached genocide levels and do not seem to be slowing down. Being a Christian is not just about going to church and other religious activities. Folding hands whiles others suffer is not what Christ would want His people to do.
Just like the situation Binniyat, speaking about the wrong being done and standing up for others will not always be rosy or attract applause. Massive criticism may be the outcome of the effort. The mere fact that Christ was prosecuted should also prepare you for the persecutions that may come.
In Ecclesiastes 4:10, one key aspect of being a child of GOD is standing for others. If a Christian falls, Christians are obliged to lift him. Protect those unable to protect themselves and stand up for them. Just as Christians need Christ to stand up for them against the work of the enemy, Christians are needed to stand up for others against difficulties.