The races for the vice-presidential slots of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, are gradually taking shape.
In the APC, the front runners, as of last night, are Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State; his immediate predecessor, Senator Kashim Shettima; Governor Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa State; and Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State.
“If APC governors were to decide, they will pick from the North-West; it will be Badaru, who stepped down for the presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, at the presidential primaries”.
“If they were to pick from the North-East, it will be Governor Zulum, who is expected to cede the slot to his mentor, Shettima,”. An APC source said.
The source added that if those opposed to the Muslim-Muslim ticket succeed, Simon Lalong would be in line for consideration.
This came as the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN; Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN; an Arewa Coalition; and APC national stakeholders cautioned the APC against fielding a Muslim-Muslim ticket.
In the PDP, sources said that despite the strong claim being made by the South-East, the battle is panning out as a straight one between Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State.
However, those pushing for the PDP presidential running mate to come from the South-East zone argued that the PDP would be toying with millions of Igbo votes across the country if it sustains its alleged maltreatment of the South-East by denying it the vice presidency slot.
Prominent South-Easterners in contention for the slot include former governor Of Enugu State, Senator Chimaroke Nnamani; former Senate President, also former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, and Senator Anyim Pius Anyim; and former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Chief Emeka Ihedioha.
Also, the Labour Party, LP, Candidate, Mr Peter Obi; and his New Nigeria Peoples Party, NNPP, counterpart, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, are said to be working towards an accord, where both parties will present a joint ticket for the 2023 presidential poll.