The senator representing Kogi-West, Smart Adeyemi, has proposed a bill that will ban same-faith presidential ticket by any political party after the 2023 general election.
The development is coming at a time the dust raised by the decision of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, a Muslim, to pick another Muslim, Kashim Shetima, as his running mate has yet to settle.
Adeyemi, who showed journalists a copy of the draft bill on Sunday in Abuja, noted that the Senate is seeking an amendment to Section 84 of the 2022 Electoral Act.
He said the Muslim-Muslim ticket of his political party, the APC, which generated controversies in the country, necessitated the move.
The senator said, “Section 84 of the Principal Act will be amended by inserting a new subsection 3 which will state thus: ‘No political party shall nominate candidates of the same religion as presidential candidate and vice presidential candidate after the 2023 election.
“When this is accommodated, it will serve as a guide against any oversight such as this in the future as further occurrences will be deemed as a silent policy which is capable of bringing down the fabrics of the nation.”
He said he had consulted widely with the leadership of the Senate and his other colleagues on the need for the amendment.
He, however, said though apprehensions raised by the Christian Association of Nigeria over a same-faith presidential ticket are genuine, the pedigree of Tinubu and Shetima, will allay all fears being raised.
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He said Tinubu and Shettima should be assessed based on their pedigrees and not their religion.
Adeyemi added, “Nigerians should look at the individual candidates contesting for the presidency in 2023 and not the political parties they belong to the religion they practise.
“Based on my conviction, despite the same faith ticket, Tinubu and Shetima are the best for the country come 2023.
“They have demonstrated required capacities, competence and commitment while in office as governors of Lagos and Borno States separately.
“Asiwaju Tinubu, in particular, demonstrated his pan-Nigerian disposition with his cabinet composition devoid of tribal or religious sentiments. He and Shetima are, in actual fact, Nigeria’s candidates that should be voted for.
The senator knocked the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, for violating the zoning policy of his political party, saying it is the turn of the South to produce the next President.
He also took a swipe at the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, for allegedly believing in street show, which he said, cannot in any way win an election.