THE Catholic Bishops of Kaduna Ecclesiastical Province has criticised the security situation in the country under President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
The Bishops said they were shocked by the seeming lack of empathy that continues to be displayed by the President regarding the senseless loss of lives across the country.
In a statement by John Niyiring, Secretary of the Ecclesiastical Province and Bishop of Kano Diocese issued at the end of their meeting in Kafanchan, Kaduna State, said Nigeria had never been as rudderless as it is now.
They added that, “to many Nigerians, the Federal Government has looked on in either helplessness or total lack of concern and care.”
The Catholic Bishops of Kaduna Ecclesiastical Province is made up of Kaduna, Kano, Kontagora Minna, Sokoto and Zaria dioceses of the Catholic Church.
The statement read, “To many Nigerians, the Federal Government has looked on in either helplessness or total lack of concern and care. All of this has taken its toll on the morale and confidence of the security agencies.”
“We are hearing of young men abandoning the battlefields, some hundreds of soldiers are opting for early retirement from the service on grounds of loss of motivation. Nigeria has never been as rudderless as it is now. Amidst all of this, we need to turn our attention specifically to Southern Kaduna.”
“Over the years, our people have been woken up to these orgies of mindless slaughter by people who have totally lost the right to be called human beings not to talk of people who can claim to believe in God. This is not who we are as Africans. This is not who we are as Nigerians. This is not who we are as people from Southern Kaduna.”
They lamented “The slap in the wrist attitude with the Service Chiefs despite the abysmal performance seems to suggest that the President is unable to place national security before whatever other narrow interests that are known only to him.”
“We are not so much worried about the retirement of Service Chiefs or lack of it as the total absence of a clear road-map for arresting the drift and the climate of anomie that engulfs the country now.
“We are shocked by the fact that our President displays such overreaching enthusiasm in sending out condolence messages to victims of accidents abroad but pays absolutely no attention to the victims of dastardly murders under his nose, deaths of his own citizens over who voted for him and whose lives and properties he swore to protect. Something urgent needs to be done to pull our country back from the brink.”
On the killings in Southern Kaduna, the Bishops said the people of Southern Kaduna feel abandoned by their governor, Nasir El-rufai in the moment of grief.
“We are saddened by the fact that in these last years, Kaduna State has been consumed by this violence and our hearts go out to our brothers and sisters in such areas especially as Birnin Gwari, Kajuru and here in Southern Kaduna,” the statement read.
“Crises test the will of a leader. At times like these, emotions are not enough. At times like this, a leader must seek out support by adopting the twin-track of diplomacy, using backroom channels and keeping an eye on restoring peace. Like the mother of twins, a leader at times like these must not be seen to be sleeping on one side!”
“As with the Federal government, we believe that the State government could do more in terms of showing empathy to the victims of these crises. The people of Southern Kaduna feel abandoned by their Governor in their grief. We appreciate that these times test the will of any leader, but there is no substitute for sobriety, calm and focus.”
They also called on the governor to visit the scenes of these tragedies and use the opportunity of condolences to scold as well as appeal to the hearts of his people.