…says while everything has broken down, corruption is thriving
. Catholic, Anglican bishops ask President to resign over lingering security challenge
The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Rt. Rev. Mathew Kukah, on Sunday took the almost seven-year old administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to the cleaners.
In his Easter message, classified as homily delivered before his congregation in Sokoto, the cleric said President Buhari had destroyed every aspect of life in Nigeria and had quite embarrassingly, allowed corruption to thrive.
“With everything literally broken down, our country has become one big emergency national hospital with full occupancy,” he demurred.
The Catholic bishop, reputed for his bluntness, also lamented, “Our individual hearts are broken. Our family dreams are broken. Homes are broken. Churches, Mosques, infrastructure are broken.
“Our educational system is broken. Our children’s lives and future are broken. Our politics is broken. Our economy is broken. Our energy system is broken. Our security system is broken. Our roads and rails are broken. Only corruption is alive and well.”
Further to his lamentation, Kukah stated that the Buhari administration had looked on, while the Nigerian had become a killing field
“Nigerians can no longer recognise their country which has been battered and buffeted by men and women from the dark womb of time. It is no longer necessary to ask how we got here. The real challenge is how to find the slippery rungs on the ladder of ascent so we can climb out. Yet, we ask, ascend to where?”
He continued, “One would be tempted to ask, what is there to say about our tragic situation today that has not been said? Who is there to speak that has not spoken? Like the friends of Job, we stare at an imponderable tragedy as the nation unravels from all sides.
“The government has slid into hibernation mode. It is hard to know whether the problem is that those in power do not hear, see, feel, know, or just don’t care. Either way, from this crossroad, we must make a choice, to go forward, turn left or right or return home. None of these choices are easy, yet, guided by the light of the risen Christ, we can reclaim our country from its impending slide to anarchy.
“The greatest challenge now is how to begin a process of reconstructing our nation hoping that we can hang on and survive the 2023 elections. The real challenge before us now is to look beyond politics and face the challenge of forming character and faith in our country. Here, leaders of religion, Christianity and Islam, need to truthfully face the role of religion in the survival of our country. The Nigerian Constitution has very clearly delineated the fine boundaries between religion and politics. Yet many politicians continue to behave as if they are presiding over both the political and the spiritual realms in their states rather than governing in a Democracy.”
He, as such, prodded all religious leaders in Nigeria to count it urgent and come to the nation’s rescue.
“Religious leaders must face the reality that here in Nigeria and elsewhere around the world, millions of people are leaving Christianity and Islam.
“While we are busy building walls of division with the blocks of prejudice, our members are becoming atheists but we prefer to pretend that we do not see this. We cannot pretend not to hear the footsteps of our faithful who are marching away into atheism and secularism. No threats can stop this, but dialogue can open our hearts.”
Meanwhile, the Bishop, Diocese of Kaduna, Anglican Communion, Timothy Yahaya, and the Bishop of Kaduna Catholic Archdiocese, Matthew Manoso Ndagoso, have also called for President Buhari’s resignation, citing intractable security problems bedevilling the country.
The call was contained in their separate Easter messages, as Bishop Yahaya said “the right thing to do by a leader who cannot deliver is to bow out of office”.
He nonetheless said there was hope for Nigeria as a nation.
In the same vein, Bishop Ndagoso said it was hard to disagree with the northern elders’ position that Buhari should resign over incessant killings in the country.
He lamented that the only thing the people got each time Nigerians are killed, maimed and abducted, were empty assurances and reassurances of security by the President, in the Presidency’s usual stereotypes.
“My Easter message is that there is hope for every individual in this country, there is hope for Nigeria as a nation. I know what we are going through, it is a dangerous and perilous time. But I tell you the only tonic of tomorrow is hope.”
“I don’t want to join issues with the Northern elders because I am not a politician. But the truth about leadership is that there is morality in leadership. If you cannot deliver as a leader in a civilised clime, the right thing and best thing to do is to bow out.”
“But what gives me concern seriously is that I am not sure if the President knows that his name is going down in history as the President that is supervising the killing of his people, as a President who is the petroleum Minister, today in Kaduna we don’t have petrol for how many months. As the President who is supervising the nation, ASUU have closed down universities, the future generation is bleak.”
“As a President who supervises where you hear billions of naira being budgeted and you don’t see anything verifiable for it.
So for me I am not talking as a politician, am talking as a citizen of this nation, I am talking with the voices of the masses, I talk with the reality on the ground.”
“I don’t know, those of you around Mr. President, all you want to do is to rub his name from the glory of the future. I hope it is not the best thing you are doing because I don’t know if they are shielding you from information.
“Look at the railway attack, our brothers and sisters are in captivity. And we are not hearing from Mr. President himself. The Spokesman can speak for the President that the citizens of this country are in the hands of terrorists. Mr. President should sit up.
“Even if somebody is speaking for him, he is telling lies. In other climes, the President will not sleep, and heads will roll because somebody is responsible for the laxity that led to this train attack.
“For me, Mr. President needs to do an x-ray of his leadership in the past seven years because by next month he will be seven years fully on the saddle. Has he done very well? How much was Dollar when you took over power? How much was petrol when you took over power? How was insecurity when you took over power? Where was education when you took over power? Where was the name of Nigeria when you took over power? Today we hear money being budgeted for a Turn Around Maintenance of refineries, where are the refineries? And how do you want me to believe that corruption is being fought in Nigeria?”, Bishop Ndagoso appraised.