Abdulsalami, Kukah Meet With Osinbajo At Aso Villa

 

The National Peace Committee (NPC) on Thursday, met with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Aso Villa in Abuja.

Led by the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, and former Head of State, Gen. Abdusalami Abubakar, the NPC met with Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo behind closed doors.

The meeting with Osinbajo comes after the NPC ended their meeting with the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar.

READ ALSO: We Will Meet Atiku In Court – Oshiomhole

Speaking with journalists after the meeting, which took place at the residence of the PDP Presidential candidate, Gen. Abubakar said his committee decided to address the disagreement, given its mission to always ensure that there is peace in the country.

“Currently now, tensions are high and we need to see how we can douse the situation. We have come to listen to the grievances from the PDP. We will continue shuttling to see how we can make sure that the peace is maintained,” he said.

Asked if the talks would be extended to the ruling party, Gen. Abubakar said, “Naturally, when you are dealing, of course, you need to contact all the stakeholders.”

Atiku Was Invited For Peace Accord Signing, Says Kukah

 

A member of the National Peace Committee (NPC), Matthew Kukah, says former Vice President Atiku Abubakar was invited for the signing of a peace accord ahead of the general elections in 2019.

Kukah who is also the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese said this in an interview with Channels Television on Tuesday in Abuja.

“I have here with me a copy of a letter which was sent to all political party chairmen announcing this event,” he explained during his appearance on Politics Today.

“This is a letter that was sent which was acknowledged in the office of Prince Uche Secondus, the Chairman of the PDP.”

Atiku Was Invited For Peace Accord Signing, Says Kukah
Bishop Matthew Kukah speaks during an interview on Roadmap 2019.

 

READ ALSO
Why Atiku Was Absent At Signing Of Peace Accord – PDP
Atiku, Ezekwesili Absent As Buhari And Other Candidates Sign Peace Accord


 

Earlier, President Muhammadu Buhari and other presidential candidates in the coming elections signed an agreement at an event organised by NPC.

Some of the items on the accord include running an issue-based campaign, refraining from speeches that would incite violence, as well as support the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure a free and fair process, among other issues.

However, Atiku and the presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Dr Oby Ezekwesili, were among prominent candidates absent at the signing ceremony.

Bishop Kukah, who was specific about the absence of the PDP candidate, believes there might have been a communication problem and promises that the committee will take steps to address it.

He noted that on his way out of the venue of the event, he was also accosted by a gentleman who said his presidential candidate got to the event late due to a delay of his flight to the nation’s capital.

ASUU Strike: Atiku Pledges To End 'Incessant Labour Crisis' If Elected
A file photo of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar

 

The NPC member, therefore, stated that presidential candidates were free to seek redress while the office of the committee remained open for those absent to append their signatures.

He said, “I think the most important thing is that we will try and do everything possible; these things happen.”

“I am happy that it was just a question of an administrative error on the part of their (PDP) secretariat.

“But the office of the peace committee will remain open for anybody else who either due to communication problems, didn’t actually get their letters of invitation,” he added.

We’ve Really Not Had Political Structures With Ideological Commitment – Kukah

 

Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Matthew Kukah, believes Nigeria needs to work on its political structures to ensure good governance in the nation.

He gave the opinion during an interview on Roadmap 2019 which aired Monday on Channels Television.

“We have really not had political structures with any form of what you may call ideological commitment,” the bishop said. “Democracy is a work in progress and nation-building, and we are really truly very young in this process.”

He added, “I think that we have sometimes been a bit unfair to ourselves because designing the template, designing the building block, managing an environment of this nature, states not coming out of the reality of people’s existence, has also brought to the fore the difficulties of building democracy.”

We’ve Really Not Had Political Structures With Ideological Commitment – Kukah
Bishop Matthew Kukah speaks during an interview on Roadmap 2019.

 

Kukah blamed the slow pace of democratic development in the country on the successive years consumed by “the locust”, referring to the past military government.

“I am not talking about the military in any disparaging sense,” he stressed.

The cleric explained further, “It’s a measure of how far we have travelled but gone nowhere that even after 20 years of our so-called return to democracy in 1999, we are still in the hands of a retired general and we only had briefly (Goodluck) Jonathan and (Umar) Yar’Adua who never really finished their terms.”

He stated that the nation’s politics would continue to witness a ‘high’ of violence unless certain things were put in place.

Kukah, who is a member of the National Peace Committee led by former Head of State General Abdulsalami Abubakar, urged the leaders to support the system with institutions that would enhance democratic development.

Kukah Backs Decision To Grant Boko Haram Members Amnesty

Kukah Backs Decision To Grant Boko Haram Members Amnesty

 

The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, has supported the decision of the Federal Government to grant amnesty to repentant members of the Boko Haram terrorist group.

Bishop Kukah revealed his position while appearing as a guest on Channels Television’s Hard Copy in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

READ ALSO: FG Ready To Rehabilitate Repentant Boko Haram Members – Buhari

 

“I think I was one of the first people to raise the issue of amnesty about five years ago, I know how much we were vilified,” he said.

“But I was pretty convinced about what I was saying that for me if you mention the word amnesty, Nigerians think it simply means shaking hands and telling everybody to go home.”

On March 23, President Muhammadu Buhari had said the Federal Government was willing to offer amnesty to members of the outlawed group.

He had noted that while further efforts were ongoing to secure the release of every citizen abducted by the insurgents, government was ready to accept the unconditional laying down of arms by any member of the group who showed strong commitment in that regard.

 

Bishop Kukah, on his part, lauded the decision, saying amnesty was the way to go as no war has ended with victory being declared.

He added, “If Boko Haram has been perceived to be as so weakened as it is, we would not be talking about negotiation. So clearly, those with superior information and superior knowledge – which is what government is all about – know something that the rest of us don’t.”

Evaluating the war against corruption, the clergyman faulted the list of alleged looters recently released by the Federal Government.

He described the list as “uninspiring and diversionary,” saying it hardly speaks to the conduct of politics in Nigeria which he claimed had always run on corruption.

“From the last local government chairman, senator, president, governor; it would be nice to know one single politician who has run for office with what you call ‘hard-earned’ money.

“Corruption is not something that government fights, government might offer a lead, but it will get you to nowhere unless you have the buy-in of the people,” Kukah said.

Kukah Condemns Investing Money In Churches

Kukah Condemns Investing Money In ChurchesThe Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, has condemned the investment of billions of Naira into the running of nowadays’ churches in Nigeria.

While giving his Christmas message on Friday, Mr Kukah maintained that religion should not be a profit-driven venture.

“The word of God and its living blessings are free. Isaiah said that much when he said ‘come all of you who are thirsty, come to the water and you who have no money, come and eat. Buy wine and milk without money and without cost (Isaiah: 55:1)’,” the clergyman said.

Mr Kukah pointed out that there were times when the Catholic Church was guilty of “simony” – the practice of making profit out of sacred things.

According to him, “That was one of the reasons for Father Martin Luther’s revolt. But, so much has changed now. Prayer for our people is the duty of all ordained ministers, but today, it has become subject to abuse.”

The cleric called on Christians to return to the model of Jesus Christ as they celebrate Christmas, adding that considering the life that Christ lived, it was difficult to understand how Nigerians had come to equate success, prosperity and blessings of God with wealth.

Pope appoints Kukah to Vatican’s Pontifical Council

Pope Benedict XVI has appointed the Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Sokoto, Matthew Hassan Kukah, as a member of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, Vatican City.

Matthew Hassan Kukah with the Pope Benedict XVI

The 13-member Council is the highest decision and policy-making body for the Council for the Holy Father.

Kukah’s appointment is coming after the appointment of the Archbishop of Abuja, John Onaiyekan as a Cardinal.

The Bishop has recently had sundry of appointments and awards.

In May, the President of the Conference of Bishops of English and French speaking West Africa appointed Kukah as the Chairman of the Commission on Culture, Inter-religious Dialogue and Ecumenism.

In February, he was elected Chairman of the Commission on Inter-religious Dialogue for the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria.

He had earlier served the Council in five-year tenure when Francis Cardinal Arinze served as the President of the Council.

He was a delegate at the just-concluded Synod of Bishops for the New Evangelisation in the Vatican.