“APC scared of Atiku Abubakar, can present Muslim/Muslim ticket if Bola Tinubu becomes presidential candidate”

Fearing that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar or another northerner could become the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) refused to zone its presidential ticket.

Naija News reports that with ethnic and religious politics, Nigerians can vote on ethnic and religious grounds.

This prompted the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan; and governor Badaru Abubakar from Jigawa State to join the presidential race.

A source revealed that all regions will be allowed to compete for the APC presidential ticket, adding that the ruling party could be in trouble if Atiku emerges as the PDP’s flag bearer.

An APC source told The PUNCH that, “It is not in our constitution that people should be deprived of their basic human rights. Moreover, the Nigerian constitution says that anyone can challenge. In 2014, Rochas Okorocha competed against four northern wannabes. In 1999 , Alex Ekwueme and Abubakar Rimi feuded with Olusegun Obasanjo for the PDP ticket.You can’t break a law that doesn’t exist.So we can’t be held responsible for a law that doesn’t exist.

“Our thought is that if Atiku Abubakar gets the party ticket, then we will be in trouble. Thus, the party will open its ticket. I don’t see this decision being overturned..”

The source added that the APC could end up sending a Muslim/Muslim ticket if the former governor Bola Tinubu from Lagos State emerges the APC presidential candidate.

“If a northern candidate does not emerge from the APC, then the running mate must be a very strong northern Muslim politician. That’s the challenge Tinubu will have, but if there is, then a Muslim/Muslim ticket is what we’re looking for. We will win the North core and the Southwest,” he said.

Denise W. Whigham