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Nigeria broken under Buhari –Bishop Kukah laments

The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, yesterday launched a scathing attack on President Muhammadu Buhari saying under his watch “everything literally has broken down” he also accused his government of dividing “our people on the basis of ethnicity, religion, and region, in a way that we have never witnessed in our history”.

 

According to him, corruption is the order of the day as it’s “alive and well” as “the government has slid into hibernation mode”. In his Easter Message titled: ‘To mend a broken nation: The Easter metaphor’, Kukah lamented that: “Nigerians can no longer recognise their country which has been battered and buffeted by men and women from the dark womb of time”.

 

The cleric said: “Our dear country, Nigeria, still totters and wobbles as we screech towards a dangerous and avoidable canyon of dry bones.

 

“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 is easy, yet, guided by the light of the risen Christ, we can reclaim our country from its impending slide to anarchy. “The challenge of fixing this broken nation is enormous and, as I have said, requires joint efforts.

 

With everything literally broken down, our country has become one big emergency national hospital with full occupancy. Our individual hearts are broken. Our family dreams are broken. Homes are broken. Churches, Mosques, and infrastructure are broken. Our educational system is broken. Our children’s lives and futures 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.” Kukah insists the challenge facing Nigeria is: “To begin a process of reconstructing our nation hoping that we can hang on and survive the 2023 elections.”

He added: “The greatest challenge for Nigeria is not even the 2023 elections. It is the prospect for the reconciliation of our people. Here, the Buhari administration sadly has divided our people on the basis of ethnicity, religion, and region, in a way that we have never witnessed in our history.

This carefully choreographed agenda has made Nigerians vulnerable and ignited the most divisive form of identity consciousness among our people. Years of friendships, cultural exchange, and collaboration built over time have now come under serious pressure from stereotyping.”

Kukah also criticised Buhari’s focus on rehabili-  tims have been forced to make the various IDP camps their new homes! Where is the justice for the victims and the rest of the country they have destroyed?

“As a priest, I cannot be against a repentant sinner or criminals changing their ways. After all, the doors of forgiveness must always remain open. However, in this case, Nigerians have very little information as to the entire rehabilitation process. Have these terrorists felt the heat or have they seen the light or, is their repentance a mere strategic and tactical repositioning?

“So far, we have no evidence that these terrorists have been able to confront their victims not to talk of seeking forgiveness from them. Something is wrong. We see these terrorists adorned in our national colours in their green and white kaftans, trousers, and looking like heroes of the state!

Are we to assume that they have become acknowledged models for Nigerian youth? Perhaps the next graduating set might be treated to Presidential handshakes, receptions at the villa with full national colours!”

The Bishop told Christian leaders to focus on beginning the process of reconstructing the country rather than worry about surviving the 2023 general elections.

 

Kukah said: “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.

“This conflict between Caesar and God is inbuilt in faith and is part of world history. Many religious leaders often measure their power by how close they are to Caesar, yet Caesar’s embrace is often full of thorns.

 

The challenge is for the religious leader to know that both Caesar and those he represents are answerable to God who created them.

 

The welfare of citizens constitutes the cornerstone for measuring the legitimacy of any political leader. “As such, religious leaders must focus more on the issues of welfare, safety and security of ordinary citizens. They must raise their voice when these rights are being trampled upon. A leader must know when to call Caesar a fox and not a horse.”

 

 

 

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