Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State on Tuesday revealed that he consulted President Muhammadu Buhari before he picked his running mate, Dr. Hadiza Balarabe, for the 2019 governorship election.
El-Rufai since picking Dr. Balarabe, a Muslim, as his running mate, had faced several criticism over his choice.
“Muslim-Muslim ticket is not a religious ticket but a competence and performance ticket,” the governor said while receiving the people of Sanga Local Government Area who visited him to thank him for picked their daughter.
“About a year ago, the Deputy Governor, Barnabas Bala, told me that he was going to contest the senatorial election, I was in a dilemma to get a replacement for him.
“So, we started with a list of people for consideration, and I had up to 32 names, including the names of some people seated with me here today.
“Then, we started selection and dropping names based on merit. From 32 names to 17 to 12 and then five, three males and two females.
“At that point, and as usual of us, when we are taking serious decisions, we consult President Muhammadu Buhari, because he is the only person I know that has worked in the army, he has been Governor, Minister and President.
“So, when I told him, he said anyone older than me should be dropped. Then one name was dropped, remaining two men and two women, then he said ‘since you are interested in a woman, pick the best woman’. That was how I picked Hadiza, because she was the best.”
“The people that have criticised me most on this are people who never voted me in the first place. So, are they not supposed to be celebrating it. In their own opinion, I have made a wrong choice? Then, why are they mourning?”
Brigadier-General Aliyu Yamma, the paramount rule of Numana in Sanga LGA, in his statement noted that the choice of Dr. Balarabe had given his people hope in government.
“The governor couldn’t have made a better choice than the selection of Hadiza. We now feel a sense of belonging in Kaduna government. We are just like black Americans in Kaduna State,” he said.