The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has described the ruling All Progressives Congress’ (APC) reported move to field Muslim presidential and vice-presidential candidates in the 2023 general elections as a poisonous chalice.
The group also described it as confirmation of claims that President Muhammadu Buhari’s government wants to ‘Islamise’ Nigeria.
Kaduna State Governor Nasiru Ahmed El-Rufai
The group accused the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai and other Northern Muslims of using some Southern Christians including the former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu and former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode to push for a violation of constitutional provision on federal character.
The group said, “We are uniquely worried by the organised and well-choreographed, well oiled, well-funded and properly engineered campaigns by Islamic fundamentalists such as Governor Nasir El-Rufai and others using some Christians like Orji Kalu, Femi Fani-Kayode to canvass the infantile opinion that either it does not matter that candidates for the office of President, Vice President or Governor and Deputy Governor should comply with the simple constitutional demand of the federal character principles in appointments and elective positions.”
The group, therefore, warned the APC and other political parties against presenting a Muslim-Muslim ticket for their presidential candidates, saying it is capable of causing hatred and sectarian division in the country.
It insisted that the plan to continuously dominate all the key political positions in Nigeria including the President, Vice President, Chief Justice of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives with Muslims and also maintain President Buhari’s appointment of only Muslims to head the top security agencies is unacceptable.
Kalu, drummed support for Senate President, Senator Ahmad Lawan’s presidential bid before the latter lost the race in his party’s presidential primary election last week, also on Wednesday said APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu can choose a Muslim from the North as his running mate.
Kalu’s argument is that Tinubu’s wife is a Christian, but HURIWA described Kalu’s position as “puerile, irrational and totally illogical and warped thinking.”
The group added that Kalu’s assertion is like presuming that the office of the President of Nigeria is like the office of the General Overseer of a Pentecostal Church.
“It is aware that the plot is to foist an Islamic state because what will happen is that Bola Ahmed Tinubu who is a hard-core Muslim extremist but masquerading as a moderate because his wife is a so-called deacon in Redeemed Christian Church of God,” the group said.
Saharareporters, New York