Actor Kenneth Okonkwo of Nollywood has left the ruling All Progressives Congress because of the party’s choice to run a Muslim-Muslim ticket in the 2023 election.
Despite criticism from some quarters to a same-faith ticket, News Direct reports that APC presidential candidate Bola Tinubu announced former Borno State governor Kashim Shettima as his running mate on Sunday.
The actor made his choice public in a letter posted to his Instagram page on Monday.
He claimed that Tinubu’s selection of Shettima as his running mate, despite calls from stakeholders and other Nigerians for a Christian northerner to complete the party’s ticket, forced him to make his decision.
Part of the letter read, “Recall that joined APC because of its Constitutional vow, as true Progressives and Patriots, to eliminate all forms of discrimination and social injustice in Nigeria, thereby building the nation a nation which will guarantee equal opportunity for all and ensure mutual and peaceful co-existence among Nigerians.
“Those ideals are now alien to the APC, with their unfortunate decision to paint our Muslim brothers in had light, by insinuating that the Muslims in Nigeria will not accept or vote for a Northern Christian as Vice-President to pair with a Southern Muslim.
“If Muslims could vote voluntarily for Southern Christian Presidents, it is then a fallacy to insinuate that they cannot accept a Northern Christian Vice-President. This will permanently destroy the political viability of Northern Christians in Nigeria, if allowed to stand.
“Being the convener of the Campaign for Equity and Justice in Nigeria, and as a former member of APC Presidential Campaign Council, which resisted same religion presidential ticket in the past, I can no longer continue to lend my name to these abnormalities in the interest of our peaceful co-existence, integration and progress of our beloved country.”