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Muslim-Muslim ticket agitators’ll fail in 2023–Clergy

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EMMANUEL AWARI, Jalingo

Those agitating for a Muslim- Muslim ticket for the presidential election in 2023 have been described as selfish people who will fail in their plot.

The Leader of religious organization, Northern Elders Christian Forum, Rev. David Ibi, stated this during a programme to round off three days prayers and fasting at the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN secretariat, Jalingo.

He said any attempt by the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, to impose a Muslim/Muslim ticket would only portray Nigeria as an Islamic and a sectarian nation, which will be ultimately resisted by the nation’s millions of practicing Christians, moderate and progressive Muslims and civic groups, ethno-cultural associations and enlightened members of the International community, adding that it is a great threat to national stability, regional peace and security.

He said many Christians in recent weeks had been killed in different parts of the country and they include the massacre of over 40 worshippers on Pentecost Sunday at Owo, Ondo State and the stoning of a Christian college student, killing of Christians in TakumUssa and Yangtu in Taraba state.

Sadly, such violence has become the lot of many Christians in Africa’s most populous country adding that religious violence and intolerance directed toward Nigerian Christians has worsened in recent years.

“One report documented more than 4,650 cases of Nigerian Christians who were killed for their faith in 2021,” he noted’

 He, therefore, called on President MuhammaduBuhari to direct the security forces to do the needful by advising Sen Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the ruling party on the possible threats this action could pose to security in the country.

He said:“It is pertinent to note the serious implications of the above with regards to security. This is especially when one rightly imagines that Christians will feel threatened with a Muslim/Muslim ticket, and may resort to pulpit preachings and mobilization of opinions across the Christendom.

“Civil society organizations and students would likely protest this destructive introduction into our polity in various manners which may constitute security concerns.

“However, it should be noted that the “original sin” is the adoption of a Muslim/Muslim ticket by the ruling APC, and not the reactions and responses that may follow it.”

“The West African sub – regional, and indeed, African regional peace and security are basically predicated on the presumption of Nigeria’s political stability, or at least, the absence of any conflict that can overwhelm the Nigerian State.

“This is because there is nothing in the African Peace and Security Architecture that is designed to contain a conflict in Africa’s largest population of over 200 million people in a country that shares very porous borders with three sub– regions – West, Central and North Africa.

He therefore implored President Bihari to use his good office to weigh in on the APC presidential candidate; Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to thread with caution and refrain from his unyielding desire to foist on the nation a Muslim-Muslim ticket which if it succeeds will make the above tragic and destructive humanitarian quagmire a distinct possibility.

Similarly, advocacy oriented group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has also warned Tinubu, against picking a Muslim as his running mate in the forthcoming general elections.

National Coordinator of the group, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement, stressed that the emergence of a Muslim-Muslim ticket Presidency will further heighten the aggression against Christians by bandits and terrorists who claim allegiance to Islam.

The group said Tinubu’s move is unconstitutional and violates Section 14 (3) and (4) and Section 318 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which specifically stated that the principle of federal character should be reflected in the composition of government and that no group, religious or ethnic, should dominate the other.

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