LAGOS, Nigeria (VOICE Of NAIJA)- Femi Fani-Kayode, Nigeria’s Former Minister of Aviation, has said Nigeria can’t be islamised, in an interview on Channels Television.
The politician said he has “prayed about” the Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Bola Tinubu, the APC presidential candidate, picked Kashim Shettima, the former governor of Borno, who is also a Muslim, as his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.
The development has elicited criticism from key stakeholders, particularly the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
Before joining the APC, Fani-Kayode, on several occasions, had accused the APC-led federal government of Islamisation and Fulanisation of the country.
Asked to comment on APC’s Muslim-Muslim ticket in the light of his previous comments, the former minister said since he joined the ruling party, he realised that the party has “completely changed”.
He added that the claim of Fulanisation of the country has been thrown out of the window.
Fani-Kayode said it is not about the faith of the presidential candidates but their individual abilities.
“We spoke about Fulanisation, that has been thrown out of the window now because power has been shifted to the south by the APC, the party we accused of that,” he said.
“Secondly, we spoke about Islamisation. Since I joined APC, I realised that, like I said earlier, things have completely changed.
“A situation whereby in this country today we have no less than 20 Christian governors.
The whole of the south-west has Christian governors, except for Osun state, which has now changed because we have a Christian governor who is coming in.
“A situation like that tells you clearly that the country cannot be Islamised and neither is our party APC interested in that. What is happening as far as I’m concerned is this, we have reformed and moving forward.
“Same faith ticket was a challenge but we looked into it. I prayed about it, I consulted, I spoke to Kashim because all along my position has been – it all depends who the vice-president is.
“It is not about the faith. It is about the individual and if the individual is a Muslim that I can live with, I’m prepared to live with that. I spoke to this man and Tinubu.
“The candidate himself returned schools to the missionaries in Lagos something that had not been done before. The candidate gave land to so many of these mega churches in Lagos when he was governor and since that time they have been granted licences to build churches.
“Go to the north, the vice, that is Shettima himself, I met him for over three hours, we discussed. I looked into the man’s eyes and raised a number of pertinent questions which I needed to be satisfied with and I was satisfied with his answers.
“He has built more churches in Borno state than any other before him and since that time and he won the confidence of many Christians. So the issue of Islamisation no longer arises.”