Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the All Progressives Congress’s (APC) presidential candidate, has defended his selection of Senator Kashim Shettima as his running mate by stating that he was unable to pick both a Christian and a Muslim.
The single-faith ticket controversy erupted in the political sphere prior to Shettima’s unveiling.
According to Daily Trust, While some stakeholders urged Nigerians to place a greater emphasis on competency than sentiment, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) rejected the proposal and cautioned parties against it.
When asked why he chose Shettima, Tinubu responded that throughout his life, he had always been guided by the values of competence, inventiveness, compassion, honesty, fairness, and dedication to greatness.
He claimed to have held numerous consultations on the matter of a running partner and to have valued the opinions of influential party leaders, political friends, and significant national individuals “who envision Nigeria’s future as I do.” Daily Trust report.
Tinubu made it clear that his choice of running partner was inspired by his conviction that leadership, skill, and the capacity for teamwork should take precedence over other factors.
“I am aware of the heated debate surrounding the potential religion of my running mate. I’ve heard from good and honorable individuals about this. Some have advised me to choose a Christian in order to appease the Christian community. Some have advised me to choose a Muslim in order to appeal to the Muslim community. I obviously can’t do both.
According to Daily Trust, “Both sides of the issue have compelling justifications and arguments in support of their claims. In their own ways, each of the reasons is valid. However, none is appropriate in the sense that Nigeria currently requires. I want to lead this country toward exceptional progress as president. Innovation will be needed for this. It will necessitate novel actions. Additionally, it will necessitate making uncommon and difficult political judgments.
“I must first run as that kind of candidate if I want to be that kind of President. Let me make the audacious and ground-breaking choice to advance the country and our party’s campaign closer to the grandeur that we were meant to attain, not to score political points.
“True leadership must start here, where politics must end. I’m proud to announce my choice today since I didn’t base it on my faith or my desire to appease a certain group of people.
I made this decision because I think this is the man who can work with me to provide the finest government possible to all Nigerians, without regard to their ethnicity, region, or religious affiliation.
“May I say this to all of you, especially to those who may be dissatisfied in my pick based on religious considerations,” Tinubu remarked in response to anyone who would feel offended by his move.
I shall not and am unable to disregard our people’s sensitive racial and religious beliefs. A crucial component of wise and competent government is giving them the consideration they deserve. Religion, race, and location, however, do not always and completely decide our course.
We must free ourselves from previous restraints if we are to move forward as a country toward prosperity and growth. Our political calculations need to be rebalanced such that competence and justice are prioritized over reductive demographics.