Bishop Kukah Warns Supporters Against Dying For Politicians

By The Evangelist
November 16, 2022

The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, yesterday cautioned loyalists of politicians not to kill themselves in demonstrating support for their candidates.

The cleric spoke against the backdrop of the banter exchanged by the presidential candidates of All Progressive Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, and Atiku Abubakar of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on Monday, amid the verbal war between both of them.

Atiku was on his way to Lagos to deliver a lecture at the Lagos Business School yesterday, while Tinubu was apparently also on his way to Jos for the APC’s campaign rally when they bumped into each other for the unexpected meeting at the airport.

Among those who were with the two presidential candidates were Senator Abdullahi Adamu, National Chairman of the APC and Mohammed Hayatudeen, a PDP Presidential aspirant.

The video of the encounter between the two men was posted on Instagram by another former presidential aspirant-turned adviser to Atiku, Dele Momodu.

Vanguard reports that the meeting between the two men came within 24 hours after PDP asked Tinubu to make his exit from the presidential contest on account of credibility issues arising from the $460,000 he forfeited to the US authorities on account of an investigation into a drug ring.

The meeting between Atiku and Tinubu held despite the repeated brickbats between some of their most vociferous supporters, notably Senator Dino Melaye and Femi Fani-Kayode who have gone personal against each other.

Bur reacting to the banter between both candidates in a Channels Television’ breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, yesterday, Kukah noted that the opposition politicians are friends jostling for their piece of the national cake and shouldn’t be taken too seriously.

Kukah, who is the Convener of the National Peace Committee, said political fanatics should learn a lesson from the public exchange of pleasantries between Tinubu and Atiku.

He said the message from the banter was that political loyalists of both frontline presidential candidates for the 2023 election should be wise, eschew violence and not kill themselves for people drinking from the same pool.

“These politicians are struggling and they’ve lived their lives struggling for the national cake which they will distribute amongst themselves. It is therefore in the interest of ordinary Nigerians to know that they have to vote to stay alive,” the cleric said.

Kukah also said that enthusiasts of politicians “must understand that these politicians know themselves” regardless of their grandstanding and posturing.

He, therefore, advised supporters of candidates all over the country to be “a bit more restrained and wise”.

He said: “We, the ordinary people, must figure out how to manage our passion when it comes to politics. Don’t take seriously the grandstanding of the politicians.

“All the things you see about them abusing themselves or quarreling, you will think they will never shake hands. They are very good friends, and many of them drink from the same pool. So, don’t go and kill yourself for nothing. That is what that message is all about.”

With about three months to the next general elections, political violence seems to be on the increase, with some recorded in parts of Zamfara and Lagos states, spreading fears about the safety of voters at the polls in 2023.

Atiku was reportedly attacked by hoodlums in Borno State last Wednesday, as a rally of the former vice president was also on October 17, 2022, disrupted by thugs in Kaduna.

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