The Catholic Archbishop of Lagos State, Most Rev. Dr Alfred Adewale Martins, on Thursday, accused President Muhammadu Buhari of hiding behind a smokescreen of state visit to disrupt the celebration of Easter by Christians.
Martins alleged this in a statement by his Director of Social Communications, Msgr. Gabriel Osu, where he registered his displeasure with the organisers for fixing the visit during a Holy week.
The statement reads, “Obviously, the visit was deliberately planned to inflict pain and frustration on Christians who would participate in Easter activities,” and wondered “why the president chose to visit Lagos on Holy Week when Christians would be deeply involved in the Holy Thursday and Good Friday celebrations.
“In view of the large Lagos population and clustered road networks, the closure of roads, coupled with the ban of Okada on many routes, will create a chaotic situation for commuters, especially Christians, who would love to take part in Easter activities. Those who would also love to welcome their president would be confused on whether to fulfil their religious obligations or go out to welcome the president.
“The organisers could have considered Christians in government and security services, who would be required to be at work, to ensure a smooth, secure and safe visit of the president.”
In a related development, analysts at Proshare Nigeria said Buhari’s visit cost the state N1.28 billion of its revenue in a note the Market Intelligence and News Analysis Site issued on Wednesday.
On account of the visit, flights were either cancelled or delayed with most commercial vehicles off work, and those working, their operators were charging exorbitant fares leading to workers in the private sectors and business owners being stranded or held up by heavy traffic.