By Luminous Jannamike, Abuja
The Catholic Bishop of the Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah has lampooned politicians who run to religious leaders for endorsements before elections.
Kukah, who spoke on Tuesday during an interview on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily, said Nigeria was yet to practice true democracy. He stressed that politicians ought to engage the people they intend to serve in order to sell their objectives to them before elections.
The Bishop, therefore, urged those seeking elective positions in government to desist from the practice of seeking endorsements from clerics.
“What we are practicing in Nigeria, it’s just theoretically we answer the name democracy. But in reality, what we are dealing with is a feudal system that is tied to agencies and ideologies that have got nothing to do with democracy.
“When last did you see a politician across Europe which we are trying to imitate go and bow to the queen or king or seek blessings from a bishop. We have too many intervening variables that are confusing the narrative.
“We are really not practicing the principles of democracy and it lies in the fact that only those who have money can hope to be voted into power.
“If you feel you need to be anointed to ascend to power then we are running a theocracy.”
Kukah, however, commended the stakeholders over the conduct of last Saturday’s governorship election in Edo state. According to him, the people left a legacy of efficiency which the entire country can emulate.
The Bishop, who is a member of the National Peace Committee, consequently urged the people of Ondo to imitate Edo electorates.
“Our commendation goes to the people of Edo State. I have received quite a lot of messages from old friends that I haven’t spoken to in a long time, commending the work of the National Peace Committee but really this is not an honour that one individual should take.
“It is the people of Edo State, the way they conducted themselves. The way they conducted themselves and I think in every sense of the word, they left us a legacy of efficiency,” he said.
He also commended the Independent National Electoral Commission, security agencies, and civil society groups for their roles in the election.
“We worked very closely with INEC and I must commend the INEC chairman for his incredible leadership, zeal, and enthusiasm.
“The Inspector-General of Police kept to his word on the promises he made to the people of Edo State and to the peace committee,” Kukah said.