Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal has said the consideration of a Muslim president and a Muslim vice president in the country in 2023 is dead on arrival.
Lawal who spoke on Thursday on Channels Television’s Politics Today, said it s out of place for anyone to consider such a thought considering the peculiarity of the nation’s political atmosphere which is divided along regional and religious lines.
“You can have the best ticket but if you don’t win the election, it’s a waste of time. So, we must bear in mind that the vice (presidential candidate) is going to contribute to winning that election.
“Extending that consideration to the Muslim-Muslim ticket, I live among the Christians, and I know that among the Christians, the question of Muslim-Muslim ticket is a no-go area; it is dead on arrival”, Lawal declared.
“Buhari himself, even at that time, had to drop this present presidential candidate because of that tension of a Muslim-Muslim ticket, and we have not seen anything in the country that has changed significantly to allow that to happen. On the contrary, it has worsened”, he added.
Lawal was responding to speculations that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress for the 2023 general elections might picked a northern Muslim as running mate, probably, one among the 11 governors who endorsed a Southern Presidential candidate for the party during the just concluded Special Convention.
However, as the search for the ruling party’s vice-presidential candidate intensifies, the APC has been warned against nominating a Muslim for that position.
According to Lawal who is an ally of Tinubu, a political party is in the business of winning elections, and to win elections, one must get the votes to beat the opponents.
He stressed the need for the party to make the necessary considerations before choosing its vice president ahead of the coming polls.
“The religious divide has increased, the tribal division has increased, the regional division has increased. So, it will be a good thing if APC will settle for a Muslim-Christian ticket because we know the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), that is what they will do”, said Lawal.
Asked if he would like to be Tinubu’s running mate, he said, “God has not told me to aspire for that position. If you reach the level of Christianity that I am, you should be able to seek God’s opinion on everything that you do and get the indication.
“I will consider it. I have been in government before, and I have not seen any personal merit or advantage to me being in government. Since I left government, I have had a very good life and basically, a businessperson, and I have lived well. I am happy, my children are happy.”