By Adejumo Enock
The Muslim Solidarity Forum has called on Bishop Matthew Kukah of Sokoto Catholic Diocese to apologise to the Muslim faithful over his Christmas message or vacate the state.
The Forum who tagged his statement as “malicious comments” against Muslims added that his statements could break the peaceful coexistence between Christians and Muslims in the state.
While reacting to Kukah’s Christmas message where he said there could have been a coup if a non-northern Muslim president did a fraction of what Buhari has done, the Forum said it wondered “how Kukah, who lives peacefully and comfortably in the heart of the Sokoto Caliphate, can make such a callous and senseless statement”.
The acting Chairman of the Muslim Solidarity Forum, Isa Maishanu while addressing a press conference on Tuesday said Kukah’s reference to the president’s religion is an attack on all Muslims.
His words, “Our intention at Muslim Solidarity Forum is not to hold brief for the President, as he has those who are paid to do that; instead, our concern is the image and reputation of Muslims, which Mr Kukah finds pleasure in attacking without an iota of caution, and by referring to him [the president] as a Muslim, that automatically brings all Muslims [into] the issue”.
“The Bishop has a penchant for speaking in parables and innuendos. His reference to a people who possess ‘a pool of violence to draw from’ no doubt is a reference to those he has always characterised with violence – the Muslims. This is a serious provocation”.
“He even has the guts to say the killings we are witnessing in Nigeria are part of a grand religious design! Religious? Who are the victims of the killings? What religion do they profess? Is it not a fact that over 90 per cent of those being killed are Muslims? Who is behind the so-called design?”.
Maishanu added that “These callous statements are unbecoming of someone who parades himself as secretary to the National Peace Committee and a member of Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC)”.
“As such, we call on Kukah to immediately stop his malicious vituperations against Islam and Muslims and tender unreserved apology to the Muslim Ummah or else quickly and quietly leave the seat of the Caliphate, as he is trying to break the age-long peaceful coexistence between the predominantly Muslim population and their Christian guests”. He said.