News broke out on Sunday, July 10 2022 that the presidential candidate of All Progressive Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu has chosen the former Borno State Governor, Senator Kashim Shettima as his running mate in the 2023 presidential race. Tinubu is a Muslim from the South-West part of Nigeria, while Shettima is a Muslim from the North-East part of the country. This means that both share the same religion.
While I respect every religion and adhere to everyone’s fundamental human right to belong to any religion, I find it rather insensitive for APC to have decided to go into the 2023 presidential election with a Muslim-Muslim ticket. Nigeria is a pluralistic and secular society, and the fact that the country is, right now, religiously sensitive and divided due to the recent religious intolerance and terrorism, it will be the height of insensitivity for a political party to come out with a Muslim-Muslim ticket with a “to-hell-with-you, do-your-worst” kind of attitude.
The sitting president of Nigeria is a Muslim and he will be in office for 8 years. Let’s not talk about his many notoriously lopsided nepotistic appointments that have further divided the country along religious and ethnic lines. When he’s done with his 8 years tenure, it’s naturally right and in line with fairness and inclusiveness for someone from the southern region and from another religion, in this case, Christianity, to take over power.
But no, APC, the ruling party wants people from the same religion to be in office for 24 years. This means Buhari’s 8 years + Tinubu’s 8 years + a northerner who will undoubtedly be a Muslim, 8 years, which equals 24 years. That’s insensitive.
What Should Be Our Response As Christians?
We should speak against this. We should pray against it. We should vote against it. We have other better alternatives. Peter Obi of the Labour Party is there. He’s credible and competent. We can, and should vote for him.
What If Tinubu Wins?
Then, I can only wish Nigeria well and pray that the worst will not happen under his presidency.
Is Muslim-Muslim Ticket Really Bad?
I’m aware that a Muslim President and a Muslim Vice President can still lead well and deliver good governance to the citizens if they are not religious bigots. The Muslim-Muslim ticket is insensitive, but as our country develops more and more, we should jettison religious and tribal sentiments and focus on capacity, value and competence. If it’s a Christian-Christian ticket that will deliver good governance, restore our economy and ensure the security of life and property, then, let him lead. If it’s a Muslim-Muslim ticket that will deliver good governance, let him lead.
However, Nigeria is not yet there. We are still divided along tribal and religious lines. We want someone from our side or religion to be in office whether competent or not.
Get your PVC, and do your own part. Let INEC do their part. Let the winner emerge. God bless you.