Muslim-Muslim ticket: APC appoints Christian governor as DG of presidential campaign

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*Lalong, Adamu, Keyamo

The All progressives Congress (APC) has made moves to douse the tension caused by its choice of a Muslim-Muslim ticket by appointing a Christian and governor of Plateau State, Mr. Simon Lalong as the director general of its presidential campaign for the 2023 general election.

Recall that Mr. Bola Tinubu, a Muslim of southwest extraction emerged as the party’s presidential flag bearer for the election.

Tinubu went against the run of events by choosing a fellow Muslim from the northeast, Mr. Kashim Shettima as his running mate thereby ruffling the feathers of Nigerian Christians, especially members of the APC Northern Christian leaders, led by a former secretary to the government of the federation, Mr. Babachir Lawal.

Other members of the APC Northern Christian Leaders include the former speaker of the house of representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara; Adamawa north senator, Mr. Elisha Abbo, and a former minister, Mr. Solomon Dalung.

In an effort to make amends and perhaps assuage the feelings of aggrieved Nigerians, the party yesterday announced Lalong as the man who fits the bill of a campaign director general

The national chairman of the party, Abdullahi Adamu, who announced the appointment while briefing journalists after he led Tinubu and Shettima to see President Muhammadu Buhari, said Lalong was chosen based on his ability to deliver.

Adamu also noted that the party was aware of the concerns expressed over the controversial Muslim-Muslim ticket of the party.

He stated that the party will explore means of addressing the issue.

“The party has taken a very careful deep look at the Nigerian situation and the political space and we believe very strongly that notwithstanding the expression that we’re hearing, we will be working on amicable solutions to the sentiment and we’re very sure by the grace of God we will put them to rest before the elections,” he said.

The APC chairman also announced the appointment of the minister of state for labour and employment, Mr. Festus Keyamo as spokesperson for the APC presidential campaign council.

Speaking on his choice as the campaign director general, Lalong said he was picked based on his capacity and his position as the chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum.

“I’m not a Christian candidate. I was not nominated as a Christian candidate. The party said I’ve been nominated because of my ability. I’ve been a very loyal member of the party. I joined APC because I believe in APC.

“Second, I’m not only the governor of Plateau; I’m chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum. So I am able to carry out leadership in any capacity. I only want to express to you that I am surprised that I’m being announced now. I am sure we’ll not disappoint you,” he said.

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