Baba-Ahmed confirmed LP’s VP pick, Tinubu to run with another Muslim

By Tunde Joshua, Abuja

  • Reactions trail emergence of Obi’s running mate
Presidential candidate of Labour Party (LP), Mr. Peter Obi on Friday officially announced the choice of a businessman and politician, Dr. Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed, as his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.

This announcement confirmed The Trumpet report of Baba-Ahmed’s choice during the week. Obi had initially forwarded the name of former presidential spokesperson, Dr. Doyin Okupe, to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as a ‘place holder’ pending the choice of a substantive running mate.

Okupe on Thursday wrote to INEC to withdraw his candidature as the party’s vice presidential candidate. Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed is reportedly the son inlaw of General Aliyu Gasau, one of the kingmakers in the country. He is also the younger brother of Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, who tweeted about Peter Obi on June 24, 2023.

Hakeem Baba-Ahmed is the Spokesman of the Northern Elders Forum while Prof. Ango Abdullahi who last month said Atiku and Tinubu can’t fix Nigeria is the Chairman. Senator Yusuf Datti BabaAhmed said the only reason for accepting to be the LP’s vice presidential candidate is to rescue Nigeria with Obi. Baba-Ahmed, a 46-yearold academic, businessman and politician stated this in his acceptance speech, shortly after he was unveiled in Abuja.

He said he believes in the genuineness, integrity and capacity of Obi to rescue Nigeria and he had no choice but to be part of the movement. Baba-Ahmed, who praised the Almighty Allah for making it possible, thanked Obi and his team for finding him worthy to be his running mate in their journey to rescue Nigeria.

“I wish to begin by uploading my endless praises to Almighty Allah who gives power to whom he wills, when he wills and how he wills.

“Also, I will remain ever submissive and indebted to my leader and my principal, the President (Peter Obi) and his team who worked diligently, researched and found me worthy. I will remain forever humble and appreciate him for this honour.

My task is simple to accept this nomination at this time, but in doing so, I will normally give justification as follows:

“The undeniable, unchallengeable fundamental reason for being on this ticket is to rescue Nigeria. And the whole logically and without saying it that you can only rescue that which you are involved in for Nigeria to be able to transform.

I cannot afford not to be part of this movement to rescue Nigeria. “The second reason is that I believe in the greatness of Nigeria, I believe there will be peace and prosperity, I believe that Nigerian people will unite; in fact, let me say that having come from educational background; I belong to the system where you walk into the classroom, after one hour you come out a changed person.

“Ever since I met his Excellency Peter Obi, I have been changing every day,” he said. He said Obi told him that the land mass in the North is the “crude oil of Nigeria.”

“How much more nationalist can you be? How much more detribalised can you be? I see a brighter future for Nigeria from such comments,” he said.

“Then I want to justify it, who was motivated by success in the private sector and fought …and after those eight years, has maintained his integrity and honour till this day, is the one that will not fail in his campaign promises, Mr Peter Obi.

“Someone who believed in financial propriety will not engage in financial rascality. He who believes in credibility and integrity no matter who he associates with will not mismanage personal, human and public resources and he is Peter Obi.

Read Also: Security strengthened for Eid-el-Kabir

“This is the high point in my life, in my career and I think this is pure. Having said this with all trust to Almighty Allah; with my belief that I am doing this for the sake of Nigeria, with all humility, I accept your generous invitation to be your running mate.”

Reactions have followed Baba-Ahmed’s emergence. All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain Joe Igbokwe and activist Deji Adeyanju dismissed Baba-Ahmed as a political paperweight. However, Adeyanju said the LP presidential ticket is truly progressive.

But Igbokwe said: “It is political suicide to pick a VP candidate who cannot deliver something as ordinary as his LGA for you in a presidential election. Anyways, everyone will wake up from the social media delusion soon.

Kwankwaso can deliver his state and many former Govs will also do well. When we criticize, we are doing so with deep understanding of Nigeria. One thing is clear now, this is nothing serious but just a social media good feeling presidency dream.”

Reacting, Obi’s media adviser, Val Obienyem, remarked: “Oh, Uncle Joe Igbokwe is thinking about the success of Mr. Peter Obi otherwise how else do we explain this his post?

From his post, it appears he actually prayed that Obi should choose a person that would deliver for him so that he wins the election. Does he not appear dejected that Obi made the wrong choice?

“If you are close to Uncle Joe, tell him that “‘Obidients’ are not looking for a person that will deliver his ward, a local champion, but a person that will deliver the totality of Nigeria.

“Should he be patriotically concerned with the man’s ward or his pedigree and competence?

Has it not bothered Joe that Nigerians are now looking for those that are healthy and competent to withstand the rigours of governance, while he is still stocked at the elite descriptive quip:

“He cannot deliver his ward”, a veiled imprimatur for old, corrupt, turn-by-turn politicians. “Look at the the VP’s age, what else shall the youth demand from such a choice?

This is a clear sign of the desire to break away from the past and allow the youth take over their country.

“Have you listened to the VP speak? He is among the most perceptive and penetrating mind. Together with Obi, they will certainly represent a progressive force we need in this country.

A force that will establish political stability, restore morality, protect lives and property, end banditry, reassure the people, aid industry and transform the country from consumption to production.

“So far as we know, Obi’s choice is the representative of the desire of what those clamouring for the combination of two hot and practical intellect have seen been longing for and not the roistering cry of delivering his ward.”

Relatedly, Kano State Governor, Alhaji Abdullahi Ganduje, on Friday, said the presidential torchbearer of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, had agreed to pick a Muslim as his substantive running mate.. He made the comments during a gathering of about 100 clerics at the Kano state government house as part of activities to mark Eid- ElKabir.

“We have advised him to pick a Muslim deputy and he has agreed,” Ganduje said. “A Muslim-Muslim ticket is a reality. It is not something new in Nigeria.”

Ganduje asked the clerics to pray for Tinubu to emerge as Nigeria’s president in 2023. He also urged them to offer prayers for his administration’s peace and progress. Ganduje asked the clerics to pray for his Deputy Governor, Yusuf Gawuna, who emerged as the APC governorship candidate in Kano State for the 2023 elections. (Channels TV).

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