By Yemi Monday
A political pressure group within the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) known as ‘Political Movement For All Christians’ in Bogoro/Dass/Tafawa Balewa Federal Constituency of Bauchi State, has faulted the claims by another group in the same area that endorsed the Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket of Tinubu-Shettima in the 2023 General elections.
This is coming barely 24 hours after a group of Christian members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bogoro/Dass/Tafawa Balewa Federal Constituency had declared support for the Tinubu-Shettima same faith Presidential ticket to spite the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, who is against the ticket.
Yakubu Dogara is the current member representing the three LGAs in the House of Representatives and has continued to voice out opposition to the same faith ticket of the APC, alongside former SGF, Babachir David Lawal, among others.
While addressing journalists in Tafawa Balewa on Saturday, Chairman of the group, Mallam Yakubu Garba, said reports of endorsement of Tinubu-Shettima same faith ticket by a group in the constituency on Friday was false and fabricated lies to attract relevance and financial gratification.
The group reasoned that, “if Bola Tinubu believes in Islam to the extent of proving it by a Muslim-Muslim ticket, why didn’t he practice it in marriage?”
While noting that a Muslim-Muslim ticket seems impossible in Tinubu’s family, the group wondered why the former Lagos State Governor who didn’t practice same faith ticket in Lagos now wants it at the Presidency.
“They said they have unanimously endorsed Tinubu. Why are they saying they will go house to house to mobilise for the Muslim-Muslim ticket? Who again will they mobilize? These are a group of hungry youths looking for financial benefits and relevance,” Mallam Garba said.
“But they should be careful in order not to incur the wrath of God in the way they use the name of Christians to seek for their selfish financial benefits,” he warned.
Mallam Garba who said that since those people based their support to the achievements of Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the then Governor of Lagos State, they should have reasoned whether Tinubu’s government in Lagos State was on the same faith ticket.
According to the group: “If it is solely his achievements in Lagos State that has become his selling point, why does he need a Muslim-Muslim ticket to sell his Presidential candidacy? Why must he jeopardize the peace, justice, inclusivity and stability of the fragile Nigeria to achieve his Presidential ambition?”
On the assertions that APC allowed Bogoro/Dass/ Tafawa Balewa Federal constituency to produce the Speaker and the TETFund Executive Secretary, Mallam Garba argued that such development was not done under the same faith ticket.
According to him, “was it a same-faith agenda that allowed us to produce such great personalities or it was based on their capabilities and track records? And was it the APC alone that enabled Rt. Hon. Dr. Yakubu Dogara to emerge as the Speaker of the 8th House of Representatives?”
“History has it on record that most of APC stalwarts were against his emergence as the Speaker, except for a few, in addition to the large votes he received from the PDP and other parties. So, APC alone cannot be credited with the emergence of our political leader as Speaker of the House of Representatives”, the group said.
According to the group, the emergence of Yakubu Dogara as Speaker was as a result of a collective collaboration of well-meaning Nigerians across all political and religious divides, giving credence to the fact that he does not need to play on the religious sentiments of our fragile state for any personal gain.
Mallam Garba also explained that his group is not opposing APC as a party but its agenda on same-faith ticket, regretting that the Muslim-Muslim ticket is an agenda of which the group is kicking against.
“We are the salt and the light of the world, therefore, we represent justice, fairness and inclusiveness as propounded by our constitution,” the group declared.
While vowing to remain APC members, the APC Christian group said that they will never tolerate any injustice that seeks to denigrate their faith.
While reiterating their stand against same-faith ticket, the group noted that they are not alone but in solidarity with the stand of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and APC Northern Christian Politicians.