Rabiu Kwankwaso, presidential candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), says he cannot be running mate to Peter Obi because he was more qualified than the Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate.
Speaking on Saturday in Gombe, Kwankwaso said that during discussions on merger with the LP, representatives from his side “thought that there should be a criteria in terms of age, qualification, offices held, performance and so on.”
The former Kano governor said his political profile and wealth of experience having served in various capacities had helped in bringing NNPP to limelight within a short time.
“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,” he said.
Kwankwaso said that accepting to run as Obi’s vice presidential candidate will collapse the NNPP, saying “the party is based on what we have built in the last 30 years.”
He said that one issue raised during discussions for merger with the LP, was that “most of the people from there believe that the presidency has to go there (South East).”
The NNPP leader said that the presidency going to the South-East in 2023 must be done based on “strategy, political calculation and equation.”
According to him, the South-East are good in business and are well talented but they should learn politics, “in politics they are at the bottom line.”
He said that the South-East haven lost out on the presidential and vice presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) had a “golden opportunity” with the NNPP, and “will be a disaster” if they lose it.
On his choice of running mate, Kwankwaso said there were options to pick from the South, and “one of them is the Labour Party man you are talking about.”
On the chances of the NNPP in the 2023 elections, he said that his party had the structure, organisation and population across the country to contest and win elections.
He said if elected president in 2023, he would create opportunities for the youths to get employed, achieve their dreams and be empowered educationally and economically.