The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Bishop Mathew Hassan Kukah, yesterday, took on the ruling All Progressives Congress-led administration on its inability to provide solutions to the Southern Kaduna crisis, even as he said the party wasn’t prepared for governance.
The Bishop who featured as a guest on ARISE TV Network, a sister company of THISDAY Newspapers in Abuja, disclosed that, the Southern Kaduna issue was not given much attention by the political elite in the country.
According to him, “I have been a student of the diagnostic school, even in the poster issue of this administration which is the fight against corruption. My argument has been that, first of all, everybody has accepted that the APC was not really prepared for governance. There is not enough evidence out there to suggest that people were really, really prepared to take responsibility and move with it.”
Kukah stated that the ruling party used over one year talking about the previous government that it took power from, adding that, the country as a result of that, lost lots of time.
He said: “It took almost one year to have ministers and so on and so forth. Now, I mean, there was something on Facebook the other day identifying the various ministers, only one or two or three who are doing what they were trained to do. These are some of the issues.
“Frankly, as far as I am concerned, my argument would have been that when Buhari took over power, my view is, he would have taken a leaf from South Africa. That is that, you take over a convoluted environment such as this, whether it is the corruption or whatever, it is that we should have spent more time dealing with. It’s not money that Nigeria needs. This country was haemmoraging badly, the Niger Delta, Biafra and Boko Haram and so on.”
“To come back to the issue, I mean we’ve been on this for such a long time. Today, it is Southern Kaduna, yesterday it was something else and tomorrow it will be something completely different. But, I think that this issue has not been given much attention. We really have not been able to figure out what really is wrong with Nigeria. Whether it is Biafra as you mentioned in the news, the agitators, how is it that this nation is in constant state of commotions”
“Unfortunately, religion has become the tour guide but, really we don’t have problem let me say between Muslims and Christians. There are Christians, there are Muslims and there are people who are misusing the religion but, it all comes down to the nature and the responsibility of the political elite who have stepped up and asked us to give them the mandate to govern us. So, we intend to blame the victim, which is that the Christians have not just been able to settle down with their Muslims brother.
Kukah said “the country (Nigeria) does not belong to Christians and does not belong to the Muslims, and people don’t get elected into public offices as Christians or Muslims. So, it’s a question of the failures of the inability of the political elite. There is absolutely no bad will but just sheer mental inability to understand the structure. It is a problem of leadership”.
He lamented at what he described as the inability of the political elite to manage and take advantage of the country’s diversity.
According to him, “On Friday last week, I delivered a speech at a university on managing diversity and what is wrong with Nigeria is that we had so many people coming into political offices thoroughly ill-prepared and they are prepared for one thing and they are there for only one thing: state capture and access to state resources.
“So the question of how to manage a diverse set up of people, I mean, the young people in Biafra represent a narrative that we didn’t conclude. Now, how do you manage energetic, young and intelligence people? They are not the only ones but, when you talked about the Southeast of Nigeria, you are talking about a substantial percentage of the Nigeria economy, you are talking about a percentage of the Nigeria elite. So, how do you deal with such kind of people. It is the responsibility of government at every level to have the capacity to manage and harmonise these diversities,” said Kukah.