The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Dioceses, Mathew Hassan Kukah, has called for a more honest, open and robust strategy to end banditry and other security challenges in the country.
In his Christmas sermon on Saturday, the Bishop accused the federal government of ignoring its responsibility of protecting its citizenry.
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“We have before us a government totally oblivious to the cherished values of the sacredness of life.
“Today, after over seven years, our over 100 Chibok Girls are still marooned in the ocean of uncertainty. Over three years after, Leah Sharibu is still unaccounted for. Students of the Federal Government College, Yauri, and children from Islamiyya School, Katsina, are still in captivity.
“This does not include hundreds of other children whose captures were less dramatic. We also have lost count of hundreds of individuals and families who have been kidnapped and live below the radar of publicity,” Kukaha said.
He said that tales and promises about planned rescues have since deteriorated into mere whispers and that nothing expresses the powerlessness of the families like the silence of state at the federal level.
Kukah said, “The silence of the federal government only feeds the ugly beast of complicity in the deeds of these evil people who have suspended the future of entire generations of our children.
“Does the President of Nigeria not owe us an explanation and answers as to when the abductions, kidnappings, brutality, senseless, and endless massacres of our citizens will end? When will our refugees from Cameroon, Chad or Niger return home? We need urgent answers to these questions.”
The bishop, however, commended the efforts of the nation’s security men and women to restore order in the country.
He also blamed the government for not doing enough to address the negative effects of climate change in the country.
“Air and water pollution, waste management, deforestation, desertification, erosion, and flooding, continue to threaten Agriculture, Aquaculture and the welfare of citizens despite all the grand plans.
“Over time, we have seen long, good promises caught in the web of bureaucratic fraud,” he said.
On the amended electoral act, Bishop Kukah commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and the National Assembly for falling into line with the wishes of the people and injecting technological innovation into the electoral process.
He urged the National Assembly to quickly act on the observations made by the President on the issues of direct or indirect primaries and return the bill to the President for assent.