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Masari only stop gap, Tinubu still searching for running mate —BAT Campaign spokesman

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Masari only stop gap, Tinubu still searching for running mate —BAT Campaign spokesman

The spokesman of the Bola Ahmed Tinubu Campaign Organisation, Bayo Onanuga, has cleared the air on the selection of Katsina State politician, Ibrahim Kabiru Masari, as the running mate to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC), for the 2023 general election.

Tinubu had submitted the name of Masari as his running mate to beat the Friday deadline by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for all political parties to submit names of their candidates for elective positions

The former Lagos State Governor and National Leader of the APC had surprised Nigerians by choosing Masari which many see as an unknown quantity when he officially returned his completed nomination forms to the INEC.

But in a statement on Saturday clarifying the situation, Onanuga said Masari was just a placeholder whose nomination was a stop gap to give Tinubu and the party ample opportunity to shop for a running mate who would then replace the former National Welfare Officer of the party.

“Ibrahim Masari is not really a surrogate per se like people are insinuating. He is just holding forth. The electoral act stipulates that candidates have the window period to substitute up till sometime in August, so that will give Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the APC ample time to scout for a suitable and accepted running mate,” Onanuga said.

Read also: Governor Masari begs Nigerian govt to reopen Katsina-Niger border

“Asiwaju will use that time to continue consulting with the party, governors and the president. He is taking his time and doesn’t want to rush it.

“He just wants to carry everybody along. Even the elections will take place in 2023 and the campaign wouldn’t start until September. The window period is still long. There is no need to rush anything about it.

“I think we have fulfilled our own part by submitting the name as required before the window of INEC deadline closes,” he added.

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