From Noah Ebije, Kaduna
As controversies continue to trail the Muslim-Muslim ticket fielded by All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential flagbearer Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Progressive Christian Clerics (PCC), North-West zone, has said the Christian faith encourages brotherliness, hence their decision to support the Tinubu-Shettima ticket.
The group with members across 19 northern states, including the FCT, said Nigerians should be more concerned about electing leaders with the capacity to tackle security challenges and economic problems militating against the country’s progress rather than issues of religious and ethnic sentiments.
In a statement signed by North-West Zonal Chairman, Reverend Moses Bitrus of Arise and Shine Prophetic Ministry, Kaduna, said instead of joining to fight and grudge over the issue of Muslim-Muslim ticket, “we have resolved to pray to God to give us leaders with the wisdom and knowledge to govern Nigeria.”
According to the statement, the group noted: “Nigeria is collapsing and needs leaders with a proven track record of performance that is adequately equipped to fight the threats by insurgency with all seriousness. We need committed leaders with the capacity to deliver on campaign promises without excuses once elected.
“These among several reasons are why we disagreed with Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and other churches kicking against issues of Muslim -Muslim Ticket.”
The group however pointed out that, “though Nigeria is a cosmopolitan state with a multi-ethnic and religious diversity, it is high time we began to speak about leadership on the basis of merit, competence, experience and record of performance in a choice of who leads across all tiers of government.”
While stating that Tinubu governed Lagos for eight years and Shettima governed Borno for the same period of years, it said: “The records of their exemplary leadership in the area of religious tolerance, economic development and other indices of development are in the public domain.
“We resolved to stand by our faith that preaches love for our neighbours and peaceful coexistence without any fear of intimidation to urge Nigerians to vote on basis of records and not religion.
“Tinubu has been married to a Christian wife for over 40 years and is known for his good relationship with Christians across Nigeria. Shettima was singled out as a very receptive governor, who gave priority to the growth and development of Christian communities in Borno during his day as governor, so why the outcry?
“Religion should not be the basis for electing a President and his running mate,” the statement added.