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The on-going debate on the so-called Muslim/Muslim ticket for the APC in the coming Presidential election is not only diversionary but reckless. For anybody to contemplate that idea whether from within or from outside the APC is like trying to destroy the foundation of the house even before the construction is completed some people had in a very misleading and erroneous circumstance cited the case of Abiola/Kingibe experiment to justify the present the present proposition, but such people miss the point.
At that time, religion was not a serious issue in Nigeria’s political equation. Secondly, it was at the desperate situation in which Nigerians wanted to ease out the military out of the polity. They were therefore ready to make any sacrifice in that direction. Unfortunately, the drowning situation in which the present political ruling class of the country has reached is a situation in which it is ready to hang itself to anything in order to save it from irredeemable drowning even if inevitable. One hanger on which it rests itself now is religion. The current branding of the APC as a Muslim or Boko haram party is therefore not an accident but by a well laid down design. In view of that, for the APC to fall into the PDP erected ditch will be unfortunate. What is however most irritating about the idea is the name of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which is being associated with the Vice Presidential slot either with Buhari or Atiku. It is better to believe that it is the enemies of Tinubu that are using that gimmick not only to blackmail him but to reduce his glowing political profile not only in the country as a whole but in the Yoruba nation in particular.
Given the stride which Tinubu has reached in national project, especially his eight year adventure under the awful and man-hunting Obasanjo Presidency, it is unimaginable for him to think of second fiddle to anybody in contemporary Nigeria. It is only reasonable and wise of Tinubu to feel more at home as Yoruba leader than as Vice President to anybody in Nigeria. It will be an insult to the memory of the great sage, Papa Awolowo as the indispensable Yoruba Leader of all times. That the status of Yoruba leader is almost equivalent to that of President or Head of State can be proved by the fact that Awolowo was not President when he was conferred with the national honour of GCFR that is usually bestowed on the President.
The late Papa Abraham Adesanya was not Vice President before the Yoruba in unison deferred to him as their Leader. Before Adesanya, nobody could have imagined an MKO Abiola as Vice President to anybody. Yet, Yoruba did not only defer to him but also respected him to the point them laying their lives for his defence. The other way of looking at the Tinubu scenario is that the shoes of Yoruba leader is too big for him. Whether he himself is enjoying the debate, one may not know. But what is certain is that the whole plot could have manufactured and ignited by the political detractors of the potential Yoruba leader. For the APC to think of a Muslim/Muslim or a Christian/Christian ticket will amount to helping to polarize the country along political lines. That will be very disastrous for a progressive party like the APC.
The real content of progressivism is the ability to work within the political exigency and reality of the socio political components in religion, ethnicity and geography. Awolowo made the mistake in 1979 when he picked a fellow southerner as his running-mate. The rest of that political indiscretion on the mortal sage is now history. The APC must not fall into the same trap because it is the hope of all progressive minds in the country.