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Christmas: Lai Mohammed Warns Bishop Kukah, Other Clerics Against ‘Criticising’ Buhari Govt

The minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has urged religious leaders in the country to refrain from using the occasion of Christmas to stoke up hatred and disunity, by criticising the President Muhammadu Buhari administration on their alter.

DAILY NIGERIAN reports that the minister made the call in reaction to a statement credited to the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Rev Matthew Kukah, who alleged that the Buhari’s acts of nepotism could have led to a coup if he was a non-northern Muslim.

Issuing a statement on Saturday through his spokesperson, Segun Adeyemi, the minister warning that resorting to scorched-earth rhetoric like that of Mr Kukah could trigger unintended consequences.

He said: ”While religious leaders have a responsibility to speak truth to power, such truth must not come wrapped in anger, hatred, disunity and religious disharmony.”
According to the minister, it is particularly graceless and impious for any religious leader to use the period of Christmas, which is a season of peace, to stoke the embers of hatred, sectarian strife and national disunity.

”Calling for a violent overthrow of a democratically-elected government, no matter how disguised such a call is, and casting a particular religion as violent is not what any religious leader should engage in, and certainly not in a season of peace,” Mr Mohammed said, adding that instigating regime change outside the ballot box is not only unconstitutional but also an open call to anarchy.

He said while some religious leaders, being human, might not be able to disguise their national leadership preference, they should refrain from stigmatizing the leader they have never supported anyway, using well-worn and disproved allegations of nepotism or whatever.

The Minister said whatever challenges Nigeria might be going through at this moment could only be tackled when all leaders and indeed all Nigerians come together, not when some people arrogantly engage in name-calling and finger-pointing.

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