A coalition of Christians of Northern Extraction within the All Progressive Congress (APC) has warned that the party’s Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket for the 2023 general election will have terrible and dire repercussions.
The organization, composed of Christian lawmakers from the APC’s 19 northern states, stated that they would not campaign for a Muslim-Muslim ticket in their individual areas, as it would violate their conscience and faith.
The organization made its position known in a communique signed by its Chairman, Prof. Doknan Sheni, and Secretary-General, Ishaya Bauka, which was issued on Tuesday in Abuja following a meeting at which the issues of the APC Muslim-Muslim ticket and their implications for the country were discussed.
Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the party’s presidential candidate, announced Kashim Shettima as his running mate on Sunday.
The coalition stated that Nigeria remained a multi-religious, constitutional democracy and not a theocracy, adding that the nation’s present political climate differs from that of 1993.
The statement added, “The nomination of a Muslim vice presidential candidate was insensitive to the nation’s Christian population.”
Christians in the North and the nation as a whole are concerned that the APC would be perceived as an Islamic party. Since a Muslim-Muslim ticket was not viable in 2015, why should it be possible in 2023?
Muslim-Muslim ticket will weaken the electoral chances of Christian candidates in the APC in the various Northern states, given our fears that the person selected may have been involved in the Chibok girls saga and other terrorist actions. The Christians of the North and the entire nation are extremely distressed.
“Given that the Chairman of the party is a Muslim, the Deputy Chairman – North is a Muslim, the President of the Senate is a Muslim, the Speaker and Deputy Speaker are Muslims, and now both the presidential and vice-presidential candidates are Muslims, and apart from this violating the constitution, section 14 subsection 3, if all these were Christians, could any Muslim in the North sell the APC presidential ticket to any Muslim ummah?”
They warned of dire implications if the selection of a Muslim vice-presidential candidate was not reversed, arguing that “at this time of national crisis, unity, not infrastructure or economy, should be Nigeria’s first priority.”
“Because without oneness, we cannot construct. The coalition stated that any party or candidate that prioritizes the greed of a few over the needs of the people has no business controlling Nigeria’s affairs.