‘Govt House Not A Place Of Worship,’ El-Rufai Defends Muslim-Muslim Ticket

**Says He Consulted Buhari Before Picking Balarabe

Governor of Kaduna state, Nasir el-Rufai, has spoken on his choice of a Muslim as running mate in the 2019 elections.

The governor, in a statement said his running mate, Hadiza Balarabe was selected based on merit and with the advice of President Muhammadu Buhari.

He made the statement when he received a delegation from Sanga local government – Balarabe hometown, who had come to thank the governor for choosing their daughter.

He categorically stated that the government house is not a place of worship but a place of work.

He said, “So, we started piling list of people for consideration and I had up to 32 names, including names of some people seated with me here today.

“Then we started selection and dropping of names based on merit. From 32 manes to 17 to 12 and then five names -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 you 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.

“From the beginning, I had told my team that, I will never choose or deny anyone appointment because of religion or ethnicity,” he said.

“But some people started all manner of things, ‘Muslim-Muslim ticket’ and so on. But Government House is not a place of worship, we come here to work for the people. 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, if, in their own opinion, I have made a wrong choice? Then, why are they mourning?”

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