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Nigeria 2023: Tinubu’s team bets the farm on a Muslim/Muslim ticket

By Akin Irede
Posted on Friday, 7 January 2022 12:10

Bola Tinubu, former Lagos state governor and All Progressives Congress (APC) leader, speaks at a party meeting in Abuja
Bola Tinubu, former Lagos state governor and All Progressives Congress (APC) leader, speaks at a party meeting in Abuja Febuary 17, 2015 REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Ahead of the 2023 Presidential election in Nigeria, frontline candidate Bola Tinubu is planning to break with tradition by picking a fellow Muslim as his running mate in order to receive support in the predominantly Muslim North. It is a move which is unsettling many in the predominantly Christian South. Several associates of the former governor have revealed to The Africa Report how Tinubu plans to win if he gets the APC Presidential ticket -- including on how he plans to capture the South-South vote.

In his recently published autobiography titled, ‘My Participations’, Bisi Akande, a former interim Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), narrated in detail how his bosom friend, Tinubu, almost emerged the running mate to Vice-President Atiku Abubakar in 2007. Akande said Atiku, who is also a Muslim, promised to pick Tinubu as his running mate.

When Atiku emerged as the Presidential candidate of the Action Congress, he said he reneged and decided to pick a Christian from the southeast, Senator Ben Obi.

Akande also claimed that in 2014, after the formation of the APC, Buhari promised to make Tinubu his running mate if Tinubu helped him to win the APC primary. Tinubu embraced this idea and went ahead to support Buhari.

However, after winning the primary, Buhari, a staunch Muslim, reneged on his promise, claims Akande. Buhari argued that it would be wrong to have a joint Muslim ticket in a polarised country like Nigeria.

The book also revealed was that Tinubu had no problems with two Muslim candidates running on a joint Presidential ticket.