On Monday, hundreds of members and supporters of the ruling All Progressives Congress took to the streets of Lagos to express their displeasure with the party’s position on the divisive Muslim-Muslim ticket. Under the direction of the Coalition of APC Stakeholders Network and Southwest Supporters of Tinubu, the protesters started their calm march from the well-known Shoprite Shopping Mall in Ikeja to the State House in the Central Business District neighborhood of Alausa.
The demonstrators carried several banners that read, “Dear Baba Asiwaju, Let Shettima Step Down in Yoruba Interest,” “President Buhari and Tinubu should rethink Muslim-Muslim ticket,” and “Tinubu, replace Shettima with Christian VP to balance the ticket” as they made their way through the clogged streets caused by the protest while chanting solidarity songs.
Only a month has passed since a similar demonstration erupted outside the APC secretariat in Abuja. To voice their displeasure with the party’s stance on the divisive Muslim-Muslim ticket, hundreds of protesters invaded the All Progressives Congress national secretariat. Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, was introduced by the APC leadership at Shehu Musa Yar’Adua in Abuja almost at the same time as the protest. Shettima was the former governor of Borno State.
The delegation arrived at the Secretariat in six opulent buses and a few cars as part of the protest, which was organized by a small group of party members under the auspices of the APC Hausa-Fulani Youth Forum. They carried various banners and sang songs of solidarity as they arrived.
The banners included among others those that read, “A cry for justice,” “Drop Shettima and give slot to our Christian brethren,” and “Discrimination and mutual suspicion in our land.” Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s choice of running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, is the only thing standing in the way of him winning the presidency in 2023, according to Elder Samuel Arokoyo, President-General of the organization, who spoke to reporters in front of the State House in Alausa.
Many of his fans, particularly those in the South West, were reportedly astonished when Tinubu chose a fellow Muslim to run for vice president, he claimed. The coalition reaffirmed that the main goal of the nonviolent demonstration was to persuade the party’s presidential candidate to drop Shettima in favor of equality and fairness.
Arokoyo emphasized that selecting a Northern Christian running mate for the ticket could win Tinubu close to 70% of the Christian votes in the northern states of Kogi, Kwara, Plateau, Nasarawa, Benue, Taraba, Kaduna, Adamawa, Gombe, Borno, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), whose votes can make the difference.