The Emeritus Archbishop of the Catholic Diocese sitting in Abuja, His Eminence, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, has lend a supporting voice to back the recent statement made by the Most Rev Mathew Kukah.
Most Rev. Matthew Kukah is the Bishop of Sokoto Diocese. The bishop was lashed by the Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Sheu in response to a message credit to the Bishop last Sunday to mark the Easter celebration.
Bishop Kukah was described by the presidency as ungodly and accused of being partisan due to the bashing of the President Buhari/APC led government by him.
The Bishop in his Easter message dwell more on the State of the Nation. He blamed the Federal Government for the present challenges the country is facing which has resulted to insecurity; killings, kidnapping, banditry, rituals and many others.
In his reactions, Archbishop Onaiyekan, who appeared as a guest on AIT breakfast show in Abuja said, Nobody can stop Bishop Kukah from speaking against bad governance in this country of ours for it is absolutely ours.
“I believed that genuine religious leaders had a clear role to play in the nation politics and speaking the truth to power in the name of God is not excluded
Onaiyekan stated, “With due respect to whoever is speaking for the Presidency, i want to say he has a wrong idea of politics. If you understand politics as to how you organise and manage the community for the common good, we are all supposed to be politicians.
“Does that mean that whenever we (religious leaders) tell the truth and work to make our country better, we should shut up because we are playing politics? No, we refuse to keep silent and we will continue to talk.
“In the whole project of nation building and good governance, people have different roles to play. The role of Mr President is the most important in terms of organising and administration. The role of religious leaders, if you are a genuine one, should be to be able to speak in the name of God.
“So, let no one make attempt to stop Kukah and other religious leaders from speaking from their hearts.
“Kukah is not preparing a coup against Buhari. He’s only concerned about the ordinary people he sees every day and is speaking for so many who do not have a voice”.
Onaiyekan calls on the federal government to hear what Kukah had to say and take the issues serious instead of attacking him for saying the truth.