The Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, has said that his administration does not have anything against Christians in the state.
Contrary to speculations that he picked a Muslim running mate as a result of his distaste for Christians, El-Rufai said his decision to pick a Muslim running mate was not based on religion and ethnicity but to promote women participation in politics.
He stated this at a Town Hall Meeting with a group of pastors under the aegis of ‘Pastors United For Change Association’ held in the state.
Recall that El-Rufai’s choice of Hadiza Balarabe, from Sanga Local Government area of Southern Kaduna as his running mate, generated uproar, especially among Christians in the state.
The governor emphasised that his choice was only influenced by her ability to deliver in office and not by religious sentiment, pointing out that since he assumed office as the Governor,his interest has been to get the desired results irrespective of bias.
Urging residents to focus on things that foster unity, El-Rufai maintained that his target is to end the religious, ethnic division and unite the people of the state.
“In my life, I have never worked with people based on religious and ethnic consideration. Don’t look at what people said but what I have done in the past.
“Go through my records and see what I have done. On the issue of my running mate, we are encouraging women participation in politics.
“She is a competent woman,” he said.
The governor revealed that Kaduna is the only state in the Northern part of the country with male/female ticket, disclosing that the state’s late Commissioner for Education, Prof. Andrew Nok, introduced Hadiza Balarabe when there was need for someone to revive the primary health.
He expressed confidence that Balarabe will be fair to all and would effectively run the state even in his absence.
Also speaking, the Chairman of Pastors United for Change Association, David Adeniran, said going by the governor’s explanation, they understood that he desired a united Kaduna devoid of religious and ethnic sentiment.
He thanked the clergymen for honouring the invitation just as he admonished them to go home with new thinking that something good is happening in Kaduna.