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2023: Coalition warns Tinubu on risk of losing Northern Christians

By Ernest Nzor (Abuja) and Abdulganiyu Alabi (Kaduna)
04 July 2022   |   4:05 am
National Coalition for Democracy, Peace and Unity (NCDPU), following its summit in Kaduna, has rejected the idea of All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, picking a Muslim as running mate.

[FILES] Bola Ahmed Tinubu<br />PHOTO: Twitter

Muslim-Muslim ticket may worsen aggression against Christians, HURIWA tells APC flag bearer
National Coalition for Democracy, Peace and Unity (NCDPU), following its summit in Kaduna, has rejected the idea of All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, picking a Muslim as running mate.

It warned that APC would lose the votes of Northern Christians if the flag bearer picks a Muslim.

The coalition, which stated this in a communique, yesterday, resolved to work with only political parties and candidates that consider Nigeria’s diversity and regional interests.

It said the topic of the one-day summit, ‘The 2023 Presidential Elections: Need for a United and Peaceful Nigeria’, was carefully selected to discuss the best approach to addressing issues overheating the polity ahead of the general elections.

The communique, jointly signed by National Coordinator, Comrade Ibrahim Ringim, and Secretary, Comrade Peter Emmanuel, reads: “As concerned democrats, we are deeply worried about the potential threats and political crisis that would be created if the ruling party resolves to consider a Muslim-Muslim ticket during the forthcoming presidential election.

“The summit was informed by the palpable tension stirred up by regional agitations and the impending crisis the idea of a Muslim-Muslim ticket could cause. Thus, we are asking all political parties to strike a balance along religious and ethnic lines for united and peaceful co-existence.”

ALSO, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), yesterday, cautioned Tinubu, to stop contemplating fielding a Muslim as running mate in the forthcoming general elections.

In a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, HURIWA said the scenario would heighten aggression by bandits and terrorists against Christians.

It said Tinubu’s move is unconstitutional and violates Section 14 (3) and (4) and Section 318 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which specifically states that the principle of federal character should be reflected in the composition of government, and that no group, religious or ethnic, should dominate the other.

HURIWA said: “It is crucial to warn Bola Tinubu, for the umpteenth time, to stop his plot to nominate a Muslim running mate. The nomination will endanger national unity and divide Nigeria irretrievably.

“If Tinubu goes on with a Muslim running mate, APC should just forget about Nigeria because religious war will break out and Nigeria’s case will be worse than Somalia.

“With President Muhammadu Buhari, a Muslim from Katsina State, who is obviously not concerned about terrorist attacks on Christians, what will happen when Nigeria has a Muslim-Muslim presidency? It means an Islamic state would be declared and war will kick off!

“HURIWA urges Nigerians to reject the APC or any party that wants to foist same religion ticket on a heterogeneous and multi-religious people like Nigerians.

“What happens to a Muslim-Christian ticket? What happens to a Christian-Muslim ticket? If a Christian-Christian ticket can’t work, then, a Muslim-Muslim ticket should never work! Nigerians should reject such parties with their Permanent Voter Cards!”