Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, has praised the presidential ticket of the Labour Party saying Peter Obi, the party’s candidate is a breath of fresh air.
Lawal, who’s a ranking members of ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, also hit back at the presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, describing him as someone who lacks the capacity for him to accept to be his presidential running mate.
Lawal had since June vehemently opposed the same faith ticket of the APC alongside Northern Christian leaders and elders.
Speaking on Arise TV on Thursday evening, while explaining the rationale behind the adoption and endorsement of the Labour Party presidential candidate and his running mate, Baba Datti-Ahmed by the Northern Christian Leaders, Lawal said the two possessed the qualities necessary for leadership as president and vice president of Nigeria respectively.
He explained that the Northern Christian group met and consulted with all the major political parties except the APC, which he described as having bad “character.”
He said the criteria the group looked for before making their endorsement was all inclusiveness, describing the APC’s “Muslim- Muslim ticket as an evil designed to sow the seeds of discord in the country.”
He said further that, “We decided that we’re not going to have anything to do with that ticket.”
According to him, “We felt that we should look at the potential for all inclusiveness of the citizens of this country, a tendency that can give us justice, a tendency that can create a level playing field for every citizen of Nigeria, irrespective of tribe, religion and culture.
“So with this in mind, we started evaluating the various candidates, spoke to our people and the tendencies within the Northern Christian community and indeed non-Christian community, the majority of us aggreed that they are the best platform.”
Lawal stressed that the Niger Delta Forum, the Afenifere, The Middle Belt Forum among other regional cultiral groups had stated their position based on equity, thus the decision of the Northeen Christians to align with them.
“For equity’s sake, the president should move to the south, and if it is South, an extension of the equity requirement, that it should go to the Southeast, which since this new democracy, has never had the chance to produce a presidential candidate,” he said.
He pointed out that the South West and the North have had it and so it’s only fair that the South East produce the next president for Nigeria.
“And of course, the argument is quite balanced. We decided that for those who think that the Northwest has a very large majority of voters, it’s all fair to produce the vice president” in this scenerio.
He further explained that, “We looked at a system that brings harmony in our country, peaceful coexistence, security and peace.
Again, we looked at the tendency of the ruling party and of course also it appears that the same oligarchs have been running the country since independence.”
Talking about the Labour Party, he noted that, “It’s good to diversify, it’s good to allow every part of the country to feel a sense of belonging in the leadership structure of the country.”
He said the ticket of the Labour Party “gives a breath of fresh air in the country because they don’t come with an excess baggage – former this, former that, and they have the potential to provide the level playing field for all ages to participate in a legal and equitable manner.”
When asked that Tinubu had said those northern christians in the APC opposing him because he decided not to pick them as his presidential running mate, he dismissed the capacity of the former Lagos State governor.
“If you know Senator Bola Tinubu very well, you will find out that he has the tendency to stretch tools sometimes, and I can assure you if he said that to somebody like me, I have never aspired to be his running mate. I have never.
“For one, I don’t think he has the capacity for me to be his vice presidential candidate. He doesn’t have the capacity the way I know him to be. So I don’t see why I should aspire to be a vice presidential candidate while I have the qualifications to be president.”
He explained that people who know him can testify noting that, “I know myself. I know my capabilities. I am not cut out for government work, so I don’t know who else is talking about that with him.”