Rabiu Kwankwaso, the presidential candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) has explained why Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of Labour Party should be his running mate in the 2023 presidential election.
The former governor of Kano State who was in Gombe State on Saturday July 2 to inaugurate the state office of NNPP and to meet with elected members of the party, said Mr Obi being on the ticket of the NNPP as a vice-presidential candidate in 2023 would provide a viable route for the South-East to actualize its presidential ambition in the future.
Kwankwaso further stated that if he decides to become the Vice Presidential candidate of any politician, his party, NNPP will collapse.
“From the discussion with Labour Party, the main issue was who becomes the president if the parties merge.
“At the end of the day, some of our representatives thought that there should be a criteria in terms of age, qualification, offices held, performance and so on.
“Of course the other side wouldn’t want that. Most of the people from there believe that presidency has to go there (South East).
“If now I decide to be vice presidential candidate to anybody in this country; NNPP will collapse, because the party is based on what we have built in the last 30 years.
“I served for 17 years as a civil servant; we are talking of 47 years of very serious hard work that is what is rarely holding NNPP now.”
Kwankwaso also said that while he’s not against presidency going to any part of the country, it must however be done based on “strategy, political calculation and equation.”
The former Governor of Kano state who also claimed that the South-East is good in business but poor in politics, added that the region which lost out on the presidential and vice presidential candidates of both All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), now has a chance with the NNPP.
“In politics they are at the bottom line.
“Even if my friend (Peter Obi) wants to accept vice presidential candidate, some people in the South-East will not accept, that is not strategic.”
He said Bola Tinubu was strategic to have supported the APC in 2015 and “today he is the presidential candidate of the APC.” Mr Kwankwaso said the best option for the South East was for the zone to partner with NNPP, “this is a golden opportunity, if they lose it, it will be a disaster.”
On the choice of his running mate, Mr Kwankwaso said “we have options in the NNPP in the South to pick a good vice president and one of them is the Labour Party man (Peter Obi) you are talking about.”
On the chances of NNPP in 2023 elections, Mr Kwankwaso said his party had the structure, organisation and population across the country to contest and win elections.