The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has warned major political parties in the country against fielding Christian/Christian or Muslim/Muslim presidential ticket in 2023.
The Christian association made this known on Friday in a statement by its National Secretary, Joseph Bade Daramola.
The two major political parties (the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)) have produced Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar respectively as their presidential candidates. Both of them are Muslims.
With Atiku searching for a souther Christian to balance his ticket, reports emerged on Friday that the APC is looking to pair Tinubu with a strong Muslim northerner ahead of the 2023 election.
CAN has described moves to field candidates of the same faith as a threat to the fragile peace and unity of Nigeria.
The group congratulated the presidential candidates of the APC, the PDP, the Labour Party (LP), including other parties that are participating in the forthcoming Presidential election.
CAN urged that a balance of both religious practitioners be considered in the choice of running mates of the presidential candidates.
The association said: “We do not subscribe to Christian/Christian ticket or Muslim/Muslim ticket. Politicians can talk politics but we have stated our view long before now. Any party that tries same religion ticket will fail. This is not 1993. Even when we have joint Muslim/Christian ticket, the church still goes through hell. Only God knows the number of Christians that have been killed in the last seven years with no one apprehended or prosecuted.
“Imagine how bad it will be if we have two Muslims in power? The extant Nigerian Constitution promotes religious balance. So, if any political party wants to try Muslim/Muslim ticket, it’s at it’s own peril. CAN is only forewarning, but will make a categorical statement in the event our warning is not heeded.”
CAN stated that the presidential running mate for Tinubu should be a Christian from the North, Atiku’s running mate should be a Christian from the South while Obi should choose his own among the Muslims from the North.
According to the group, anything contrary to the above means that the leadership of these political parties do not bother about the unity of this entity called Nigeria.
“Those who are planning Muslim/Muslim ticket should also find out what was the outcome of MKO Abiola and Kingibe ticket in 1993. If they try Muslim/Muslim ticket this time around, the outcome will be worse because our fault lines are very visible.
“There is no party that has no great, good and patriotic Christians who can preside over the affairs of this nation not to talk of being the Vice President as some mischievous people are trying to say. If merit and competence are used as yardsticks, we have many qualified Christians in all the 774 Local Government Areas of this country,” the group said.