Reports have emerged claiming various caucuses of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have commenced intense push to produce the running mate for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
It was gathered that eight names have been penciled down as possible running mate for the former Lagos State governor but northern political clout and the fear of a Muslim-Muslim ticket is currently leaving APC leaders in a dilemma.
The eight names that have so far emerged included Governors Babagana Zulum (Borno), Nasir el-Rufai (Kaduna), Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano) and Samuel Lalong (Plateau); former governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima (who led Tinubu campaignorganisation); former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Honourable Yakubu Dogara and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha.
Top critic of the APC and Bishop of Catholic Diocese in Sokoto, Matthew Hassan Kukah has surprisingly emerged among those been considered.
Daily Tribune quoted a source as saying, “The only drawback for Kashim Shettima is that he’s not Hausa/Fulani and that it will be the first time Hausa/ Fulani will not be represented in government. The same holds for Dogara, Boss, Lalong.
“Another source claimed that there is a strong push for Bishop Hassan Matthew Kukah who retires later this year to balance the ticket, in spite of his occasional acerbic views on the APC federal administration.”
It was gathered that leaders of the northern region are bent on securing the interest of the region in the next general election in the country.
Those proposing the possibility of a Muslim-Muslim ticket are of the opinion that that is the only way of stopping northerners from voting against Bola Tinubu.
The source added: “The APC is likely to fly a Muslim/Muslim ticket because some influential members of the northern establishment have insisted that they do not want a Christian vice president in the North.
“There’s no Christian who can match Kashim Shettima in the entire North. Dogara can’t win more than Tafawa Balewa Local Governnent Area in Bauchi State. The SGF, Mr Boss Mustapha, is neither Hausa nor Fulani and can’t win in multi-ethnic Adamawa State.
“Lalong is neither Hausa nor Fulani stock, so the majority Hausa Fulani may not accept him. Let’s look at the turn of events, something tells me it will be a Muslim/ Muslim ticket.”
Lalong is seen by some influential members of the northern establishment as part of the ethnic minorities who are spread across such states as Plateau, Benue, Kogi and Niger.