By Fr. Anthony Adetayo

The Bishop of Sokoto Catholic Diocese; Most Rev. Matthew Hassan Kukah was a guest at Channel’s Sunrise on Friday 30th September 2022 to speak about the National Peace Commission recent events.

It will be recalled that on Thursday 29th September 2022, at the International Conference Centre in Abuja, about 14 Presidential aspirants of different political parties were gathered by the National Peace Commission to append their signature to a peace pact that they will conduct themselves becomingly, abide by the Rule of Law and accept the election results if not rigged in any manner. With this they are to avoid violence and hate speech.

The Bishop, who is also the convener of the Commission said people should not just get away with anything as they like in our political space. The signing of peace pact is both symbolic and obligated. According to him, “it’s our collective vigilance to hold the people responsible, step up and challenge them.”

“We must have a detail culture and law with a quality that you can’t get away with everything. Politics is not about moral appeal but about law and its enforcement” the Bishop added.

Answering the question of one of the presenters, the Bishop said “the culture of our democracy doesn’t even meet local standards. We can’t speak about Nigerian president because we have different names; we have President, Head of State etc. We have never been stable for once. This National Peace Commission is a midwife to help Nigerians in their moral right to expect the politicians to deliver on their promises.

When quized about how to institutionalize peace, the Bishop reiterates that we would never attain a graveyard peace. As long as human beings exist, they will create rancor but we must create consequences for bad behavior. People drive badly everywhere in the world and face the law. But in Nigeria we drive badly and may even slap the law enforcement agents. We have enough institutions but how effective they are is the issue.

Advising the youths, he said young people will set the pace. They should say “we cannot be voting and be dying while you are traveling abroad with your children and enjoying life”. As youths, they must demand space that makes them to thrive.

Bishop Matthew Kukah at Channel’s TV Sunrise