The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), yesterday, reiterated its confidence in the possibility of the Supreme Court to reverse its decision on the Imo State governorship election.
The apex court, it would be recalled, had last week nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha and directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to issue a certificate of return to Senator Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Leading a peaceful protest across major flashpoints of Abuja, yesterday, the National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, said all the justices need to do was to review the judgment and correct “the error.”
Joined by prominent party members, including the party’s Vice Presidential candidate in the 2019 election, Mr. Peter Obi, former senator, Dino Melaye, former deputy speaker, House of Representatives, Austin Opara, among other top leaders of the party, Secondus said the protest was intended to draw the attention of the world on the need to safeguard democracy in the country.
The protest, which took off at the party’s Presidential Campaign Headquarters, also known as Legacy House, also took the protesters to the Three Arms Zone, amidst chants of solidarity songs.
The National Chairman of the PDP asked the justices of the Supreme Court to be magnanimous enough to accept the fact that they committed an error and should be ready to correct the error.
The party chairman advised the Executive arm of government to stop interfering in the judicial process as well as to stop interfering in official engagements of security agencies and the electoral body.
Secondus said, “We are a nation governed by law, therefore, all we are seeking today is for our very highly respected jurists at the highest court of the land to review the Imo judgment. We are not against you, we are against the error. And by the special grace of God, I know you will revisit the error.
“All we are saying is that for you to review this error because the figures are not adding up. We, therefore, call on the leadership of the judiciary, to please, we are all human. God is the highest.
“They should revisit and reverse the Imo judgement because we believe that the figures are not adding up. That is why we are here so that the world will hear us. We are a democratic nation, and therefore, all democratic nations of the world are hearing us – the United States, United Kingdom, even the United Nations, the African Union and ECOWAS.
“We believe that people at the highest court of the land will hear our cry today, and revisit, review, and if possible, reverse, the judgement. That is justice that will be done, not only to the people of Imo State but for Nigerians who are crying. This is time to show courage”.
Secondus commended party members for comporting themselves during the protest and ensuring that it was peaceful.
“The PDP is the most peaceful party, and the largest party and well organised party in Africa. I want to congratulate you all for coming from all the nooks and crannies of this country, peacefully to register our protest”, the chairman said.
A number of the party’s National Assembly members, former governors, and former federal legislators also participated in the protest.
There was however a mild drama during the protest when one of the open trucks conveying some of the protesters was said to have skipped off the road and fell on its side.
A few persons were said to have been injured in the accident, which the organisers described as a minor incidence.
On his part, Obi tasked APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole to recall how he became governor a few years ago.
He said that but for an independent judiciary, the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole would not have been governor of Edo State for eight years.
Obi said himself and Oshiomhole were able to reclaim their stolen mandate from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Anambra and Edo states because the judiciary under the then PDP Presidency was neutral.
The PDP had denied Oshiomhole his governorship victory in Edo state in 2007, while Obi’s was stolen by the PDP in 2003, but their mandate was eventually restored by the Supreme Court. Oshiomhole was then in the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) while Obi was in the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
Addressing a protest rally organised by the PDP in Abuja on Monday, Obi said himself and Oshiomhole would not have recovered their mandate if the Supreme Court at the time had been tele guided by the Executive arm, “as it’s being witnessed today under the present APC administration”.
The PDP had staged the protest against the apex court’s January 14 judgement which voided the election of Mr Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP as governor of Imo state and affirmed Senator Hope Uzodinma of the APC as replacement.
Describing the apex court’s judgment in the Imo case as injustice, Obi charged the APC administration to emulate the politics of magnanimity displayed by the PDP during its 16 years rein. He cautioned the APC against derailing the democratic process.
Obi said, “I am speaking here, not just as a leader of the PDP, but one of the beneficiaries of the PDP’s 16 years government of doing what is right.
“I was in a minority party, I won election and PDP did not intervene. I went to court, PDP did not intervene. I benefited from it.
“Adams Oshiomhole wouldn’t have been governor, he wouldn’t have been a beneficiary of the judiciary if the PDP did what APC is doing today. He benefited from it.
“So, as a beneficiary, I am appealing to the judiciary to save this country. What happened in Imo State is enough to kill our democracy. Let us ensure that the judiciary is the last hope of the common man. My appeal to APC, is, please, do not kill this democracy”.
Also speaking, Minority Leader of the Senate, Enyinaya Abaribe said, “we have only one message to the Judiciary: if the figures don’t match, review.
But as the PDP was protesting, members of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has thronged the major roads off the popular Abuja Eagle Square and federal secretariat located in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja in protest of the alleged miscarriage of Justice perpetrated by the supreme court over the Imo guber appeal judgment.
The crow-pulling protest has also slowed down human and vehicular movements in the affected areas of the metropolis.
Addressing the party faithfuls, supporters and sympathisers, the PDP National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus said, “We believe that our big men will hear our cry today to revisit, review and reverse the judgment.
“It is a Justice not only to the people of Imo but Nigerians as a whole.
“This is the time to show courage. The Executive arm of government should stop interfering with the judiciary in its bid to deliver judgment.
“Police, DSS should stop interfering and preventing protesters from carrying out legitimate democratic practices and protest.
“What we want to correct is the ‘judicial malaria’ that took place last week.
“Protest obtains in all democratic environments all over the world”.
But no sooner the PDP speech ended than scores of hoodlums trooped out from unknown places, carrying banners in the name of supporters of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
They chanted the anti-PDP songs which instilled the phobia of possible violence and mayhem and consequently scared and dispersed passers-by close to the protest ground.
Part of their placards reads, “The PDP wanted to buy judgment but they failed and resorted to anarchy”.
However, as at the time of filing this report, it was observed that despite the ensued tensions, there was no fracas or violent confrontations as envisaged.
Similarly, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ebonyi State chapter, yesterday, blocked the entrance of the Federal High Court sitting in Abakaliki as they protested along major streets of the state over the sack of the former governor of Imo State, Chief Emeka Ihedioha.
The party, however, gave the Nigerian Supreme Court 24 hours to reverse the judgement it delivered on the Imo State governorship election.
Speaking to journalists in Abakaliki, shortly after the protest, the South-East Zonal Chairman, Austin Umahi, said the declaration of Hope Uzodinma as the governor of Imo State was a rape of democracy.
Recall that the Supreme Court had last week sacked Governor Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP as Governor of Imo State, and declared Hope Uzodinma of APC as the winner of the election.
But, the judgement has been trailed by controversy and protest across the country.
However, the protest was carried out by over one thousands party faithful in the state, who marched around the city to protest what they described as injustice and a rape on the democracy in the country.
They were carrying placards with the following inscriptions “NJC must act now”, Imo Guber case: Supreme Court must revisit judgement, Ihedioha must return as Imo State governor, Save Democracy in Nigeria, Judiciary is now the lost hope of the common man,” et al.
They all wore black attire to signify that they were in a state of grief over the judgement.
According to Umahi, “We are giving them 24 hours to reverse the judgment or else Nigeria will never remain the same. If they don’t reverse the judgment, then democracy has been murdered in Nigeria,” he said.
Also responding, the state chairman of PDP, Barr. Onyekachi Nwabonyi, condemned the ruling by the apex court, adding that the judgment has turned the Judiciary, which is the last hope of the common man into a lost hope of the common man.
Also, the Akwa Ibom State chapter of the People’s Democratic Party, joined its counterparts across the country to protest what it called unjust and unfair ruling of the Supreme Court on the governorship of Imo State.
The protesters numbering thousands marched through the major streets in Uyo, the state capital clad in black attire.
They were led by party leaders, state Chairman of PDP, Obong Paul Ekpo, National Legal Adviser, Mr. Emmanuel Enoidem, and State Publicity Secretary, Ini Ememobong.
Speaking, Emmanuel Enoidem said the judgement of the Supreme Court is not known to law and lacks legal precedence and regretted that the Judiciary which is the last hope of the common man has been compromised.
He pointed out that the removal of the former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Onnoghen was part of the plot by the Buhari led administration to penetrate the Judiciary.
“On behalf of the body of PDP at the National, I stand here to say that Nigeria and Akwa Ibom State is mourning.
We handed over power to the APC in 2015 in compliance with democratic best practice and since that day, Nigeria moved into anarchy under the leadership of Buhari.
“In November 2019, Atiku Abubakar and the PDP lost a petition because the Supreme Court said the PDP had not brought enough witnesses to prove their case but turned around to uphold the election of Hope Uzodimma when there were no unit witnesses.
“Was it only Uzodimma that had the whole votes in those polling units they added for him? What were the votes of the PDP and other parties in those polling units? These questions need answers so we know where we are going as a country. The declaration of Uzodimma as governor of Imo state has no legal standing”, he said.
The Deputy Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Princess Felicia Bassey who spoke on behalf of the state legislators, said the Supreme Court judgement was a clear rape on our democracy.
The state party Chairman, in a statement earlier, Paul Ekpo said, the solidarity March was important because silence in the face of tyrannical occurrences may be interpreted as acquiescence.
“The March is to register our displeasure over the recent political robbery in Imo state, where the apex court strangely computed and announced results which are contradictory with the existing reality, in the Governorship elections which held in March 2019,” he said.
On his part, Chairman of ALGON, Mr Frank Archibong, who spoke for chairmen of the 31 local government councils in the state lamented, “When the Judiciary becomes compromised in a democratic dispensation, it means there is no hope for Nigerians”.
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), yesterday, said that it still stands by its declarations for the 2019 elections despite the Supreme Court judgments that reversed some of the election results declared by the commission.
The commission has recently come under severe criticism following the reversal of the Imo State governorship election by the apex court.
INEC in the Imo governorship election had declared the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Emeka Ihedioha winner with 273,404 votes, while the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Hope Uzodinma who was returned by the Supreme as the authentic winner was placed fourth with 96,458 votes by INEC.
The Chief Press Secretary to the INEC National Chairman, Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi, in a chat with newsmen, yesterday, stated that “once INEC makes a declaration, it stands by it”.
According to him, “the law provides for any aggrieved party or candidate to go to the Election Petitions Tribunal to contest a declared election result. Once INEC makes a declaration, it stands by it”.
Giving graphic detail of the conduct of the 2019 general elections, Oyekanmi, observed that, “a total of 807 post-election petitions were filed at the tribunals after the 2019 general election. Out of these, 582 were dismissed, 183 were withdrawn by the petitioners and 30 reruns were ordered.
“About 12 Certificates of Return have also been issued. When you consider the fact that elections were conducted into 1,558 constituencies for the 2019 general elections, you will agree with me that the overall elections have by far been credible, free and fair”.
On the use of university vice chancellors as returning officers for future elections, which has also been criticized, the commission disclosed that no decision has been reached whether to review the use of certain categories of academic staff of federal universities as returning officers.
It added that “while it is true that some of them made mistakes as human beings during the 2019 General Election, most of them performed excellently”.
On the January 25 rerun elections INEC revealed that, “our template for the conduct of elections has not changed since our actions are guided by the extant laws.
“The voting and declaration procedures have not changed. For instance, the Smart Card Readers will still be used and the “People’s Result Sheet” will still be pasted at a conspicuous place at the polling unit level where the rerun elections will take place. The Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) will also be used and it is fact compulsory. No PVC, no voting. Besides, the system of simultaneous accreditation and voting will also apply”.
“There is no proliferation of INEC sensitive materials and politicians do not have access to them. To be sure, our sensitive materials have special security features. If any politician is found with any sensitive material, it must be fake and such politician will be arrested and prosecuted.”
S’Court Judgement On Bayelsa: RSG Condemns Attacks On Peter Odili, Family …Bemoans FG’s Silence On Threat To Ex-Gov’s Life
The Rivers State Government has condemned the cowardly attacks on the former state Governor, Dr Peter Odili and his family, especially his wife, Hon Justice Mary Odili, for performing her official duties as Justice of the Supreme Court in effort to further deepen democracy and promote the rule of law in Nigeria.
The condemnation was contained in a statement, signed by the state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, shortly after the State Executive Council (SEC), in Government House, Port Harcourt, yesterday.
The state government, which described the attacks as unacceptable and unfortunate, said it would not fold its hands and watch lawless Nigerians attack the former First Family of the state with impunity, and cautioned those involved in the dastardly act to retrace their steps and find more noble things to do to give their lives meaning.
The statement reads in full, “The Rivers State Executive Council at its meeting held on Wednesday, 19th February, 2020 at the Government House, Port Harcourt, reviewed the recent attacks on the residence of the former governor of Rivers State, Dr Peter Odili as a result of the Supreme Court judgment that nullified the election of David Lyon as governor of Bayelsa State and resolved as follows: ‘That the Rivers State Executive Council observed that the Federal Government seems not to show interest in the sponsored threats to the lives of Dr Peter Odili and members of his family.
“That the Rivers State Executive Council condemns the barricading of the residence of Dr Peter Odili at Maitama, Abuja by sponsored thugs of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“That the Rivers State Executive Council wondered why Dr Peter Odili’s family should be singled out for the unwarranted attack, when the judgment that ousted David Lyon as Governor of Bayelsa State was a unanimous decision of a five-member panel of Supreme Court Justices.
“That the Rivers State Executive Council warns the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva and the National Chairman of APC, Adams Oshiomhole and their hired agents to desist from the sponsorship of violent attacks against Dr Peter Odili and members of his family.
“That the Rivers State Government will hold Timipre Sylva and Adams Oshiomhole responsible if anything happens to Dr Peter Odili and members of his family.
“That the Rivers State Executive Council noted that in the past Rivers State suffered unfavourable Judicial Pronouncements and never resorted to self-help as being promoted by APC Leaders in the case of Bayelsa State.
“That the Rivers State Government will employ all legal means to protect Dr Peter Odili and members of his family.
“That the Rivers State Government will protect Rivers State Indigenes who are serving Federal and State Judicial officers.
“That the Rivers State Government warns that should this harassment and intimidation continue, it will have no alternative than to retaliate.
“That the Rivers State Government will defend the lives and property of Rivers people at all times. Enough is enough”, the statement added.
NUPENG Shuts Filling Stations In Rivers …RSG Cautions Consumers Against Panic Buying
Barely 48hours after stakeholders averted proposed strike over seizure of petroleum tankers by personnel of security agencies, including the Army, the leadership of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Employees (NUPENG) has succumbed to pressure, and directed filling stations in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital and its environs to shut down operations following fresh disagreement between tanker drivers and security agencies in the state.
But in a swift reaction, yesterday, the Rivers State Government has called on members of the public to avoid panic buying of petroleum products as it has taken steps to resolve issues leading to the protest by petroleum tanker drivers in the state.
Most of the filling stations monitored across Port Harcourt City and Obio/Akpor local government areas in Rivers State, yesterday, were discovered to have complied with the fresh directive to embark on strike over the arrest of some tanker drivers and seizure of their vehicles.
The shutdown of operations has led to fuel scarcity and resurgence of black market in Port Harcourt and its environs.
Also, black market operators have taken advantage of the development to make brisk deals.
Our correspondent, who monitored the industrial action by the filing station operators, reports that queues have continued to build up in most filling stations in the state capital.
The majority of the filling stations were said to have stopped dispensing fuel to motorists and other consumers since midnight on Tuesday after another tanker was said to have been seized by the Task Force on Illegal Parking.
Our correspondent, who monitored the situation in Port Harcourt, yesterday, observed that Tonnino Filling Station, Jet Filling Station and Royal Dynasty Filling Station on Ada-George Road, as well as some filling stations on Port Harcourt-Aba Road, and the few between Rumuomasi through Elekahia, were all shut down.
Also, Eterna Filling Station and Forte Filling Station located along Peter Odili Road were both shut down.
Our correspondent also tracked a Toyota Sienna and Hiace buses populated by NUPENG strike enforcement team, monitoring compliance with the directive within Port Harcourt and Obio/Akpor LGAs.
The two buses were seen criss-crossing the roads, monitoring all filling stations from Aba Road through Waterlines, and from Rumuokalagbor-Elekahia through Nkpogu to Peter Odili, and onward to Port Harcourt Township through Eastern Bypass.
Speaking on the action, the National Treasurer of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Employees, NUPENG, Comrade Alex Agwanwa, explained that the action was due to the inability of security agents to respect the understanding they reached with the union, last weekend.
Agwanwa, who is also the chairman of the United Labour Congress in Rivers State explained that between Sunday and yesterday, more trucks have been arrested alongside the drivers by security agencies.
“Instead of maintaining our understanding, they decided to arrest more trucks. As we speak, 27 trucks carrying legal products have been arrested. It is unacceptable.
“This matter has been on for the past two years. We did not want it to get to this stage but here we are,” he added.
The NUPENG official maintained that the filings stations would remain shut until all their members and trucks seized by the security agencies are released.
Some filling station attendants, who spoke with The Tide said their services were withdrawn following directives from the leadership of the joint body of petroleum marketers in Rivers State.
The Chairman of the Licensed Filling Station Owners in Rivers State, Comrade Sunny Nkpe, who spoke with The Tide on the issue, said the action was taken because of the violation of an agreement reached by all stakeholders on the matter, which shelved the earlier planned strike.
He said their members were still facing intimidation and arrests by the state task force on illegal parking and other security operatives.
On his part, the National Public Relations Officer of NUPENG, Comrade Chinedu Ukadike, said the decision reached on February 16 for security agencies and the state government to release the union’s trucks in detention by February 17 was yet to be carried out, hence the directive to withdraw of the services of members.
He further claimed that the arrests were unnecessary and carried out without proper investigation.
He said, “Most of these trucks are carrying our products. If they continue to hold our trucks in detention, what do they want us to sell?”.
Some motorists, who spoke with our correspondent, lamented the situation, stating that it was difficult for them to operate due to scarcity of products.
A commercial driver, Akanimo Abel, said he bought a liter of fuel at N350 from black market operators.
He said, “My business is badly affected by the strike, the strike took all of us by surprise, and we did not expect it. We thought all the issues have been resolved. I want the issues to be resolved once so that normal business can go on.”
Another commercial taxi driver, Chris Agbogu, said the strike has caused grave difficulties to the users of the products, adding that he was finding it difficult to buy enough fuel to enable him do his business.
In reaction to the surprise strike by tanker drivers and filling station owners in the state, the Rivers State Government, yesterday, advised members of the public to avoid panic buying of petroleum products as it has taken steps to resolve issues leading to the protest by petroleum tanker drivers in the state.
The Rivers State Commissioner for Energy, Dr Peter Medee, who gave the advise in an interview with newsmen in Government House, Port Harcourt, said the lingering protest was as a result of several threats by the union that they want to go on strike.
“There are catalog of what they actually requested that we do, and we have been making efforts to see what we can do to resolve those things”, he said.
He explained that the state government had approached the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army on some trucks seized by soldiers and that the GOC had graciously approved release of those trucks.
“Unfortunately, some of those trucks were handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for further investigation.
“There are processes that we have to take to get those ones that were sent to EFCC released, and we are in the process of getting them done”, the commissioner said, adding that the trucks at the 6 Division have already been released.
On the trucks impounded by the state task force on decongestion of roads, Medee said they had also made efforts to get them released, and also gone to the prison to release members of the union that were imprisoned, while those in police custody for wrong parking have also been released.
“What I am saying in essence is that we are making several efforts. Now, we have started engaging directly with their national leadership because we have seen that their union people in the state are beginning to show lack of understand of the sensibility of government”.
He noted that the government of Chief Nyesom Wike was very careful with the ease of doing business initiative because it was his vision that nothing should hinder business activities in the state, hence the need to thread with caution.
The commissioner further stated that the Federal Government was battling with oil theft, which was why a lot of trucks involved in sharp practices were being impounded daily by security agencies.
He gave kudos to the union leaders for declaring that they would not support any of their members involved in illegality.
“However, we expect the union to understand and bear with us. All the efforts we are making are gradually paying off. We are releasing the trucks. We are releasing their members that were arrested.
“We are not ignoring them. We are doing our very best to make sure that the problem is resolved, and I can assure you that in a short time, whatever you are seeing will be over.
“My advice to Rivers people is that they should avoid panic buying, relax, we will definitely handle this problem”, the commissioner assured.
Chris Oluoh, Taneh Beemene & Benice Iragunima
Tribute To Bishop Matthew Kuka’s Homily
Like a vote of thanks, a tribute is meant to give praise and honour to whom such is due; especially in an environment where people live in fear to say the truth, or tell an emperior that he is dressed like a clown, or behaves like one. Anybody who is acquainted with Bishop Matthew Hassan Kuka would testify that he is an ideal human being and also a shining light of what a Christian should be.
Anybody reading the homily of Bishop Kuka titled “For a Tormented Nation and a Besieged Faith”, carried by The Tide newspaper (Friday February 14, 2020), would be deeply touched by the message contained therein. In the language of the Catholic Church, a homily is a speech or advice given at a special religious ceremony, in this case, burial of a Seminarian, Michael Nnamdi, in Kaduna, murdered by kidnappers recently.
Maybe Michael was not the first or only Seminarian kidnapped in Nigeria for a ransome, but from the Good Shepherd Seminary, Kaduna, that incident was a shock. His death was a greater shock, both to Catholics in Nigeria and across the globe, with a total of 3,305 persons lighting candles shortly before his burial on the February 5.
An ancient sage once said that it is to those who understand the world, not those who disfigure it; those who strive to liberate humans from plight and enslavement, not those who aggravate them, that we owe our loyalty.
We live and intermingle in a world where there are noble and ignoble people and where those who strive to ennoble the status of mankind stand in danger. Yet, the likes of Bishop Matthew Kuka should not be lacking in every society, for they provide courage to the stooping spirit of man. Not only are humans standing in a moment of decision, moment of separation of the darkness from light and moment of rudderless navigation. In the words of Bishop Kuka: “Today, our years of hypocrisy, duplicity, fabricated integrity, false piety, empty morality, fraud and pharisaism have caught up with us”.
Truly, Nigeria is at a point where we must call for a verdict; a time to confront and dispel the clouds of evil that hover over us; for we have practiced madness for too long. Kuka, in his homily recalled how, in Chatham House in London, Buhari said: “If I am elected President, the world will have no reason to worry about Nigeria. Nigeria will return to its stabilising role in West Africa … And I, Muhammadu Buhari, will always lead from the front”.
Bishop Kuka spoke the whole truth and on behalf of Nigerians that “this President has displayed the greatest degree of insensitivity in managing our country’s rich diversity. He has subordinated the larger interest of the country to the hegemonic interests of his co-religionists and clansmen and women … Today, in Nigeria, the noble religion of Islam has convulsed …”
Unfortunately, Islam is beginning to earn an unpleasant reputation through the instrumentality of bad politics. It is true that Muslim scholars, traditional rulers and intellectuals have continued to cry out helplessly, asking for their religion and region to be freed from chokehold. Bishop Kuka tells us that “neither Islam nor the North can identify any real benefits from these years that have been consumed by the locusts that this government has unleashed on our country. The Fulani, his innocent Kinsmen, have become the subject of opprobrium, ridicule, defamation, calumny and obloquy”.
Is it a hate speech to say that this administration is “running the most nepotic and narcissistic government in known history”? Or that “the North still has the worst indices of poverty, insecurity, stunting, squalor and destitution”? does the fact that The Sultan recently lamented the tragic consequences of power being in the wrong hands, not indicate that all is not well with Nigeria currently?
Similarly, we are told that “the Northern Elders who is 2015 believed that General Buhari had come to redeem the North, have now turned against the President.” Is it not true that things fall apart when politicians use religion to extend the frontiers of their ambition and power? Why do kidnappers separate their victims and force Christians to become Muslims?
Apart from the killing of Late Seminarian Michael Nnamdi by his kidnnappers, had there not been similar killing of Christian clerics by kidnappers and terrorists in recent times? Should we accept the logic of a presidential spokesperson that since more Muslims are being killed than Christians, then there is sense in senseless killings? From the homily of Bishop Kuka that “killing Christian and destroying Christianity is seen as one of their key missions,” it become obvious that kidnappers and terrorists are out on a definite purpose.
The fact that His Eminence, the Sultan of Sokoto and the Emir of Kano, two most powerful leaders, have expressed their unhappiness over the situations in the country. But in spite of the obvious provocations and trends, Bishop M. Kuka can still tell the world that “we have no vengeance or bitterness in our hearts…Trials of every sort come our way, but we are not discouraged…”
Bishop Matthew Hassan Kuka has aptly shown through his homily that he has a clear understanding of the problems of this country, one of which is the use of religion as an instrument of political power. While not suggesting the use of violence or vengeance on the part of Christians, he has asked the current administration to run an inclusive system where everyone would have a sense of belonging and contribute to build up Nigeria.
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