By Joy Odor
Senator Kashim Shettima has affirmed his acceptance to carry the burden of trust reposed in him as the running mate of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Presidential candidate of All Progressives Congress, ( APC ).
He made the disclosure during his unveiling as the APC Vice Presidential candidate to Asiwaju in the upcoming general election at the Musa Yar’adua center in Abuja on Wednesday.
He noted that the successes of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the past two presidential elections, were not magic shows but rewards for their foresighted, and pragmatic decisions to sacrifice the personal interests and sectional sentiments, for the overriding prospects of the Party.
Senator Shettima maintained that the overwhelming endorsement of Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu at the APC presidential primaries by delegates is a clear message that Nigerians are beyond the stereotypes of those desperate to tear the people apart.
According to him, “There’s no weight I carry very carefully, as much as the burden of trust, and learning from public servants, who never take the expectations of the public, for granted. I’m standing here today because of the testaments of those who believe in me—those who crawled so that some of us could walk, and those who walked, for others to run.
“The successes of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the past two presidential elections, were not magic shows. They were rewards for our foresighted, and pragmatic decisions, to sacrifice our personal interests and sectional sentiments, for the overriding prospects of our Great Party. We are again on the cusp of history, and left with no option, other than collaborating assiduously again, to pursue the collective interest of APC’s stakeholders, across ethnic, religious, and regional stations.
This reincarnation of the 30-year-old hope that produced the late MKO Abiola and Babagana Kingibe, came at a time the country is being pushed to the edge of anarchy, by conflict entrepreneurs, in gaudy suits and babanriga. But the overwhelming endorsement of Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, at the APC presidential primaries, by aspirants from the very groups predicted to reject him; and his subsequent election by delegates from the same groups, is a clear message, that Nigerians are beyond the stereotypes of those desperate to tear the people apart.” Said Senator Shettima.
In his speech, the presidential candidate of APC, Asiwaju Tinubu said, ” I am mindful of the energetic discourse concerning the possible religion of my running mate. Just and noble people have talked to me about this. Some have counselled that I should select a Christian to please the christian community. Others said I should pick a Muslim to appeal to the Muslim community. Clearly, I cannot do both”.
“Both sides of the debate have impressive reason and passionate arguments supporting their position. Both arguments have good reasons in support of their claims. But the assurances I bring is that as President, I hope to govern this country towards greatness and progress, deploying the tools of modern innovation to resolve seemingly intractable problems that have dogged our country and hindered our match toward greatness. I make this pledge on honoured promise knowing full well that some of the decision may be politically difficult.”
“May I say this to all of you, especially those disappointed in my selection based on religious considerations. I will not and cannot ignore the religious concerns and ethnic sensitivities of our people. I come from a background and orientation of pluralism that understands that the greatest gift contemporary Nigerian leadership needs today is sensitivity to the management of our complex diversity,” Tinubu said.
While the chairman of APC Senator Abdullahi Adamu said that, “In our political tradition, the choice of a running mate is the exclusive right of the presidential candidate. He exercises that right with due consultations with the stake holders in the party. Jagaban, being an astute politician, could not have made the choice of a running mate without widely consulting the stake holders in our party, including President Muhammadu Buhari. Having made his choice, the party wholly and unconditionally accepts his choice. The party has a duty to work for their victory at the polls next year. At this time in our national development, and given the myriads of our national challenges, we should look for men and women of character, competence and demonstrable evidence of their performance in public or private offices. We believe these informed Jagaban’s decision to select Senator Shettima because he fits the bill.Senator Shettima brings to the joint ticket impressive antecedents as a political leader and administrator. Senator Tinubu could not have made a better choice of a running mate. He chose a man he believes can partner with him to undertake the urgent task of our economic recovery as well as social and political development in peace and security. Senator Shettima was a two-term governor of Borno State before being elected into the senate of the federal republic.” Said Senator Abdullahi Adamu.
Similarly, Senator Umaru Tanko Al-Makura called on Nigerians to get their Personal Voter’s Card ready to vote Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu and Senator Kashim Shettima and other APC candidates in the oncoming general election for the growth and development of the country to greater height.