The spokesperson of the People’s Democratic Party Presidential Campaign Management Committee, Dino Melaye, has said that the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, is neither fit nor prepared for the Nigerian presidency.
The former senator slammed his former political ally over the ‘the church rat and poisoned holy communion’ comment made by the one-time governor of Lagos at the Arewa Interactive Committee on Monday in Kaduna.
Recall that Tinubu, while fielding questions about climate change at the event, described climate change as “a question of how do you prevent a church rat from eating poisoned Holy Communion.”
“We are a poor nation. They say firewood is not for fetching. They say we need to plant more trees and they are not giving us money. We need to tell the West if you don’t guarantee our finances and work with us to stop this, we are not going to comply with your climate change,” Tinubu said.
But reacting to Tinubu’s claim about climate change, Melaye, in a news release made available to The Guardian, described the APC presidential aspirant’s comments as “unguarded” and accused him of insulting Christians.
“The APC presidential candidate, Ahmed Bola Tinubu, plunged into new depths of desecration when, by an unguarded and unrelated flow of thought, he despised the body of Christ by profaning the sacrament of communion and besmirching the church,” read the statement in part.
“In the same breath, he trivialised the existential threat that climate change poses to humanity.
“Furthermore, he fell out of tune with world leaders in ways that betrayed a lack of understanding of what the Reverend Dr Martin Luther King Jr called the ‘Fierce Urgency of Now’,” said Melaye, referring to the famous speech the late American civil rights leader delivered at a March in Washington in the late 1960s where he reminded a divided United States that “we need one another, and that we are stronger when we march forward, together.”
Melaye also accused Tinubu, a two-term governor of Lagos, of having a “limited understanding” of what governance entails.
”Having overlooked Christians in his choice of a running mate, he further rubbed insult on injury by calling in the Holy Communion into an unrelated conversation,” continued Melaye. “It would have been honourable for Tinubu to simply admit that he didn’t know what climate change is.
“Again, that exposed his limited understanding and poor preparation for governance. Any leader of any great nation who does not understand the basics of climate change, especially with the ongoing flooding in Nigeria and the economic conflict arising from farmers and herders, has no business aspiring to lead our dear country at this moment.
“Besides, Nigerians who have been in doubt about the presence of mind and the physiological capacity of Tinubu to preside over the affairs of Nigeria should now be convinced that he is not fit. For a moment, his thought processes tripped and he launched into another issue entirely. Nigerians could imagine if what happened in Kaduna had happened on the world stage. As I said earlier, Nigerians cannot afford to gamble with the next election.”
Melaye then went ahead to explain why his principal, Atiku Abubakar, would be a better choice for president than Tinubu or any other candidate in the race to take over from President Muhammadu Buhari.
“An Atiku presidency will not only be at home with global issues anywhere and anytime, but he would also build bridges and partnerships to address contemporary and emerging issues with pace, purpose and patience,” he said.
He added that Atiku “will collaborate with others to contain the causes and effects of climate change and, more importantly, he will work for structures that will help Nigeria to build the resilience and adaptation to climate change, particularly in climate-smart agriculture and other strategic initiatives.”