Buhari not sleeping on duty: Presidency replies Rev Mamza
Presidency on Monday described as unfair the comment by the Catholic Bishop of Yola Diocese, Rt. Rev. Fr. Stephen Mamza describing President Muhammadu Buhari as ”sleeping on duty as Commander-in-Chief.” President Muhammadu Buhari
Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, stated this in a statement in Abuja on Sunday.
The presidential aide observed that it was unbecoming of a religious leader, like Mamza, to engage ”in an action that broke the old tradition of staying above politics”.
He said: ”In an action that broke the old tradition of staying above politics, the Catholic Bishop of Yola Diocese, Rt. Rev. Fr. Stephen Mamza delivered a homily in which he spoke angrily against President Muhammadu Buhari, whom he described as ‘sleeping on duty as Commander-in-Chief.’
”This is not a fair comment.
”There is so much that has changed in the past three to four years in and around Yola, and the Catholic Church in particular that a true assessment would show that but for the Change Administration of President Buhari, things would have continued the way they were, or even get worse. These could not have happened if a Commander- in- Chief was asleep.”
Shehu, however, noted that Mamza was part of the success story recorded by the Buhari administration in Northeast, especially in Adamawa.
”Bishop Mamza was, and is still a strong member of the Adamawa Peace Initiative (API), composed of religious and community leaders which did the lovely work housing and feeding 400,000 displaced people from Northern Adamawa and Borno States in 2015.
”The API also did the extraordinary work of easing tensions between Muslims and Christians during that period and ensured that both groups did not turn on one another based on suspicion.
”As widely reported by the local and international press, in the premises of St. Theresa’s Cathedral where Rev. Mamza ministered, there were more than 1,500 IDPs, mostly women and children on whom the church administered food rations and issued bags of maize, cooking oil and seasoning.
”We are truly touched and very grateful for the work that the Bishop and the others had done in that difficult period,” he said.
The presidential spokesman maintained that as ”the Boko Haram has been degraded, the more than 400,000 displaced people absorbed by the Adamawa community have all gone back to Borno State and to those council areas in northern Adamawa.
”In addition to the capital,Yola, the towns of Michika, Madagali and Mubi which had been occupied by Boko Haram during their military advances have since been retaken by the Nigerian military”.
According to him, the military personnel are also clearing litters of Boko Haram’s carnage and are, through the support of the administration as well as local and international partners, rebuilding roads and bridges, power lines, burnt schools, markets, destroyed churches and mosques.