From Noah Ebije, Kaduna
Bishop, Diocese of Kaduna, Anglican Communion, Timothy Yahaya and Bishop of Kaduna Catholic Archdiocese, Matthew Manoso Ndagoso, have respectively thrown their weights behind northern elders’ recent call for the resignation of President Muhammadu Buhari over raging insecurity in the country.
In their separate Easter messages to the nation, yesterday, Yahaya said the right thing to do by a leader who cannot deliver is to bow out of office, adding, however, that there was hope for Nigeria as a nation.
“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 a 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 a president who is supervising the nation, Academic Staff Union of Universities 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.
“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 clime, 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?.”
On the state pardon granted former governors of Taraba and Plateau States, Jolly Nyame and Joshua Dariye, the Anglican bishop said: “Like Femi Falana said, somebody stole Indomie and you sent him to six months imprisonment, and somebody stole billions of naira, you set him free. Therefore, let’s go to our prisons and begin to apologise to the prisoners. You cannot set free those who stole patrimony of the people and sent to prison to languish those who stole five N5,000 or N100,000.”
On his part, Ndagoso said it was hard to disagree with the northern elders’ position on the need for Buhari to resign from office over killings in the country.
Ndagoso said: “Given where we are right now in terms of insecurity and the government’s handling of the situation thus far, it is hard for one to disagree with Bulama Bukarti’s assertion that, ‘the Buhari government is incompetent, inept and careless’, and the Northern Elders’ Forum that ‘his leadership has proved spectacularly incapable of providing security over Nigerians’.
“Our predicament today, especially in the North West and particularly in Kaduna State, is akin to that of the two runaway disciples with high hope prior to 2015 that someone will rescue us from the grip of terrorists, bandits, kidnappers, armed robbers, cattle rustlers, marauding herders and such like.
“All we get are empty assurances and reassurances of security by our political leaders each time scores of Nigerians are killed, maimed and abducted as witnessed recently in the mass killings and abductions in Agunu, Kagoro and Koron Tsohuwa areas, attacks on Kaduna international airport, the Abuja-Kaduna bound train that led to the killing of eight people, injury of scores and the abduction of more than 150, the killings of our gallant soldiers and vigilantes in the notorious Birnin Gwari axis and, most recently, the Plateau, Benue and Taraba mass killings have left most Nigerians with little or no trust and confidence in those charged with the constitutional responsibility of securing their lives and property…”