A member of Northern Elders Forum (NEF) and former Youth President of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Northern States, Reverend Bitrus Dangiwa has said that Nigeria is not matured and riped for Muslim/Muslim or Christian/Christian ticket for the presidential race.
Reverend Dangiwa who spoke to select newsmen in Kaduna on recent statement credited to the national leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu that it was the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki and some Nigerians that prevailed on President Muhammadu Buhari not to pick him (Tinubu) as the Vice President, also commended the bold step of the Senate president in that regard.
He therefore commended Senator Saraki for ensuring that the Muslim/Muslim ticket as advocated by Tinubu did not work out during the 2015 presidential election, adding that good percentage of Christian population would have been underestimated.
He also noted that Muslim/Muslim ticket would have worked against APC in the 2015 general election and brought about possible crisis in the country.
The NEF Chieftain said, “Tinubu’s thought of becoming Vice President to an already Islamic faith President was not only self centred, but selfish, and it would have worked against the APC.
“We know of this Tinubu’s move for a very long time, most northerners contributed to Saraki’s choice of working against a Muslim/Muslim ticket in 2015.
“So Saraki’s decision not to have a Muslim/Muslim ticket was in the best interests of the socio-political development of the nation.
“It therefore shows that there are still good Muslims and Christians who mean well for this country, and Saraki is one of such good examples”.
Asked why Nigerians, particularly, Christian community did not raise eyebrows during the transition to democratic government in 1993 when the Social Democratic Party (SDP) fielded Muslim/Muslim ticket in the persons of Moshood Abiola and Babagana Kingibe for the presidency, Reverend Dangiwa said most Christians were not active in politics neither did they show great interest in politics then, adding that Nigerians where eager to have a democratically elected government and do away with the military regime.
He however, noted that in the present circumstance, it is no longer possible to field two candidates of the same religious calling.
He added that the Senate President thought it wise as a way of promoting peaceful coexistence, hence he truncated the move, because Muslim /Muslim ticket would have brought crisis.
On 2019 election, the former CAN youth leader said it would provide another opportunity for Nigerians to test their sanity and togetherness in the face of political and religious differences.
He said many politicians would not be re-elected for lack of performance and failed promises, adding that there is hope for the masses in 2019 as only sincere leaders will elected to move the country forward.