Bishop of Sokoto Catholic Diocese, Matthew Kukah, says the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Aisha, also disagrees with the president’s policies.
Mr Kukah was speaking during an interview on Arise TV Tuesday morning, in response to the presidency’s criticism of his Easter Sunday message.
The clergyman said “all those saying I attacked the president, I have never attacked his person. All I have spoken about is his inability to manage diversities effectively and efficiently. I have studied diversity as a subject and I know what I am talking about.
“Those who think these things are personal would see that I have never talked about his person or character; I believe he is a gentleman but as far as being the president is concerned, he has done a bad job, even his wife has also disagreed with his policies.
“So, those guys should not sit in their air-conditioned office drinking coffee and think everything is honky-donkey. Let them disagree with the text of my message.”
He said he has great respect for the person of the president, and considers him a gentleman, however, as a president, he said Mr Buhari has failed to deliver.
“Let me set the record straight, I delivered my sermon to my congregation and the message. The bearers of the message are directed primarily to the good people of Sokoto dioceses.
“The president knows that I have great respect for him and he is a gentleman, but he has done a terribly bad job as the president of Nigeria.
“There is nothing I am saying that is new, all the pastors who preached yesterday during the Easter service said the same thing. Tell me one thing about the message that I preached that you disagree with and let’s discuss.”
Mr Kukah said he speaks directly with the president, but that his criticism of the government was borne from the zeal to see things get better in the country.
“For a Muslim (Garba Shehu) to sit down and tell me what an Easter message should contain is something.
“Buhari himself knows that there is nothing personal in what I say. One thing the president has said that humbled me is that he told me ‘Bishop Kukah, I know where you stand on any issue that has to do with Nigeria’.
“What connected me with Buhari and a lot of Muslims is not the catholic church, it is my public position on a lot of things. And I am not saying it so that you must agree with me”, the Bishop added.
Mr Kukah said Nigerians have been very magnanimous because he has not had many people disagree with him.
“The primary beneficiary of what I say is me and I speak for myself. If you have any issues with me, let’s clarify the issue.” he challenged his critics.