The All Progressives Congress Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s selection of former Governor and Senator Kashim Shettima as his running mate has set the former Lagos State Governor on collision course with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo who is against a Muslim-Muslim ticket. Prof Yemi Osibanjo said he has warned that such an adoption would not go well for both the party and the country in general.
A Presidency source disclosed yesterday that Prof Yemi Osinbajo had expressed serious objection to the adoption of a Muslim-Muslim ticket. According to his words; “Professor Yemi Osinbajo is opposed to this thing announced on Sunday, and his objections are well known both to the party and even the flagbearer himself,” the source said, adding that the Vice President opposed a Muslim-Muslim ticket in 2014 even before what later turned out as his own eventual nomination as Vice President.
Then he was reported to have explained to Tinubu that a Muslim-Muslim ticket would simply isolate Christians. During the 2015 Presidential election, the then APC presidential flagbearer, Muhammadu Buhari, also shared that position and rejected to name Tinubu as his running mate after emerging as the presidential candidate because Tinubu is a Muslim and he is also a Muslim and this will amount to Muslim-Muslim ticket.
The informed source said that recently, Osinbajo counselled APC chieftains and Tinubu to avoid an unbalanced ticket, arguing that such would simply be untenable and an unnecessary risk.
According to the source; “The Vice President explained that the logic, fairness and justice of a balanced ticket is unassailable. He stated that merit should be considered in a Muslim-Christian ticket and not the other way round. It is not one or the other. You can get all the merit you want in a balanced ticket.
“The Vice President said anything short of a balanced ticket creates a needless tension and further aggravates some of the country’s fault-lines. But a balanced ticket certainly sends a positive signal.”
As political tensions brewed, fresh talks of political realignments were already buzzing since after the announcement on Sunday as some other registered parties are said to be making plans to build a new coalition with Vice President Osinbajo in what is seen as an opportunity to offer a credible and faith-balanced option in next year’s presidential election. A source said a meeting to explore such a possibility is now in the works.
“APC may have shot itself on the foot with this kind of ticket, and the tensions going on in the party and the country since the announcement was made is a bad thing,” the source said. He further stated saying that such decision will be go down on APC and they may loss the Presidential seat if Tinubu continues with the Muslim-Muslim ticket.