Elder statesman and former Foreign Affairs Minister Ambassador Aminu Wali has stated that President Muhammadu Buhari should be blamed for the outrage that greeted the decision of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to field a Muslim-Muslim ticket for the 2023 election.
Naija News reports that many individuals and groups have kicked against the decision of the APC presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to field a Muslim-Muslim ticket by picking Senator Kashim Shettima.
Following the outrage that greeted the APC and Tinubu’s decision to field a Muslim-Muslim ticket, the ruling party’s Northern Christians had vowed not to support the party in the 2023 presidential election.
Many chieftains of the ruling APC have called on Tinubu to reach out to aggrieved Christian leaders and appease them.
Speaking to Sunday Sun, Wali accused President Buhari of failing to use his authority to avert the religious controversy exploding in the face of Nigerians.
He said: “Well, I have always believed in not getting too involved in this religion thing because I have always been a very liberal person.
“I will still go back to when we formed the party. Up to the last minute, I have always been an (Alex) Ekuweme man, not a (Shehu) Shagari man. I staked my support and everything for Ekwueme, not Obasanjo. And I have always had very, very close friends from all over the country and religion has never played any key role in my political relationships.
“It is very, very unfortunate that this thing is taking a bigger dimension under the APC because whatever problems that we now had is being exasperated by the seven years or so of the APC.
“We are not like this before. But because Buhari has not done what he was supposed to do as the leader of this country, which is to be transparently liberal as far as religion is concerned. He is not. He has never been liberal about religion.
“Religion should not be playing a role in our political development because politics is something that keeps evolving and improving as it evolves. But when you come to put religion into the equation, you are complicating things a lot more because you are forcing the religious divide and unfortunately, unfortunately Buhari has 80 per cent of the blame in what is happening today.
“He should have had the courage to be the leader of the APC and say yes Bola, we have gone to the convention, yes, this is the person that won, but you go and bring a Christian as your running mate. After all, when Yar’Adua was elected, Obasanjo called all the aspirants, including Peter Odili, who would have won, he said all of you go and withdraw for Yar’Adua. The man never bought any form. That is what leadership is all about.”