Former Deputy National Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Bode George, has kicked over speculations that the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, might field a Muslim running mate with its presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, in the forthcoming February 2023 presidential election.
George, in an interview in Lagos on Monday, was reacting to possibility of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC fielding a Muslim as the running mate of the party’s presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
He noted that the current state of the nation and experiences of the people in most parts of the country is taking Nigeria to another level completely, because the whole country has been engulfed in religious intolerance.
The PDP chieftain said it would be inappropriate, at this time, for any political party to go for a Muslim-Muslim tickect.
“It will be a complete lack of respect for the people. We cannot afford to conflagrate this country. So respect for the electorate. Respect for their view, respect for whatever will bring normalcy to Nigeria is what we should be doing.
“If the anger exhibited all over the country against religious intolerance and then you exacerbate it by now picking up somebody that is of the same religious sect like you how do you convince the people?”
He said, however, it is up to the electorate adding, “the electorate will still make up their mind as to what they will do. If that’s the way wants to go, I wish him the best of luck.”
The former military governor of Ondo State said, as for him, it will be inappropriate, insensitive and catastrophe should the parties field a Muslim-Muslim joint ticket.
Meanwhile, George said all the socio-political and religious tensions that the country is currently witnessing were unnecessary.
He said, “Right now, on a religious basis, there is so much unnecessary tension created. All kinds of things are flying through the media and social media and people are more careful and conscious. Nigeria is a secular state.
“We are more conscious now. The experience of Owo and some other places has given people that kind of alert and awareness that we have to be careful. That particular parameter has been woven into the political equation of this country.
“If you think you don’t have to bother about that, it means you have no respect or regard for those who are practicing one religion or the other and it will be a measure of the kind of personality that you are,” he added.
George said the will of the people is what should take the center stage in the minds of politicians in Nigeria, adding that public office is a public trust expected to manage the massive resources of the State.