Now that Kashim Shettima has come
By Yakubu Ahmed-BK
It was an intraparty affair, but it still held lots of permutations and intrigues – the very elements that are normal in democracy. The struggle to make Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress went the same way. The usual intraparty struggle for space held everyone spell bound. He emerged nonetheless.
The same thing played out as several names of highly qualified people angling to become VP candidate were mentioned as Asiwaju Tinubu zeroed down on his right man for the post of Vice Presidential candidate.
In the end, and as the good news filtered out this afternoon, former Borno state Governor Senator Kashim Shettima became the preferred candidate. With this, it is assumed that every stakeholder in the party will down the tools of the intraparty politics and keep eyes on the ball as the APC confronts a bigger and a more studious opponent in the forthcoming general elections of 2023. Keeping eyes on the ball will be a more strategic and the only option.
As we have said several times in the course of selling the qualifications, suitability and proven capacity of Senator Kashim Shettima, the man is an enigma and an engine room of selflessness. His loyalty, as soon as his mind is made up becomes nonnegotiable and irrevocable.
When he made up his mind that he was going to follow President Muhammadu Buhari many years ago, he stood by him on end. He never changed camp not to talk of changing party. Of course, there were times he appeared to have held different viewpoints, but at no time did he ever harbored an inkling of an attempt to switch party or ditch his convictions. He is the type of friend everybody will wish to have; very loyal, committed to watching your back, team player, selfless to the core, nationalistic, broad minded and large hearted in his worldview.
His popularity with the Nigerian masses will manifest as campaigns nationwide start. He will give Atiku Abubakar – the PDP presidential candidate a good run for his many in the struggle to win over the North East, the same way he will become a strategic cornerstone in all the geopolitical zones of the country.
The man who job hunted Professor Babagana Umara Zulum- a man of towering credentials must be a man of more towering credentials himself. The man who changed the face of service to humanity and fought the battles he fought to keep Borno one even in the face of possible death must be a man Nigerians should be on the look out to be Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Vice Presidential candidate.
With him as the candidate, we can safely go to sleep that the joint ticket that will take Nigeria out of the woods has finally emerged. They have worked together for years and have come to understand each other very well. They share the same passion, the hunger to remake and reposition the country, the vision and the nonnegotiable appetite to make things work.
This will be Nigeria’s best team ever assembled. Welcome on board Kashim Shettima.
BK, a veteran journalist wrote from Kebbi State