A founding member of the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State, Preye Aganaba, has tackled the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, over his comments that the APC Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket was dangerous for the country.
He said the arrangement would not lead to the Islamisation of Nigeria as touted by Lawal, describing his remarks as “disappointing, inflammatory and extreme”.
Aganaba, who reacted to the former SGF’s position while addressing APC faithful in Yenagoa, on Friday, said Lawal crossed the line of responsibility expected of him as an elder and delved into the arena of scaremongering.
He said it was unimaginable that Lawal, who should have known better, toed the path of the opposition political leaders, who whipped similar religious sentiments against the President, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), during the 2015 and 2019 general elections.
The APC chieftain said, “This is the same Lawal, who as SGF, couldn’t balance political appointments between contending political groups within the APC and between geopolitical zones that led to a lot of backlash on the President.
“We recall how the opposition continued with their narratives that Buhari was going to Islamise Nigeria despite having a Christian Vice-President. Buhari has been the president for over seven years. Has he Islamised Nigeria? The answer is no. It is on record that the Boko Haram insurgents are the enemies of everyone. These terrorists have killed more Muslims than Christians.
“The fact is that nobody can Islamise Nigeria. The Presidential Candidate of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has built a track record of tolerance, inclusiveness and liberalism.
“In Tinubu’s years as a politician, he has never expressed extreme religious views on any issue. His running mate and former Governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima, has proved himself over the years as a fine gentleman, who as a governor of Borno, ran an all-inclusive government that accommodated all religions, a fact that had been attested to by the Christian community in that state”.
Aganaba, who is a former governorship aspirant on the platform of the APC, said that apart from playing politics of hate, there was no basis for fear over the Muslim-Muslim ticket of the party.
He said Tinubu’s choice of Shettima remained a masterstroke that had further created confusion in the camp of the opposition, especially the Peoples Democratic Party.
“The choice of Shettima or another strong Muslim northern politician was a tough decision the PDP and its likes thought Tinubu and the APC would not make. They prayed against it because they knew it would destroy all their plans and calculations in the north,” he added.