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All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Tuesday promised to run an inclusive government if elected.

Speaking at a town hall in Kano with Muslim leaders from the Northwest, Tinubu promised to be fair and just leader, saying the pledge is based on the Islamic teachings of leadership

Tinubu said: “I promise to be a fair and just leader. This pledge is based on the Islamic teachings of leadership. A leader in a plural society is enjoined to be a leader for all.”

“If elected, I shall govern in harmony with our nation’s democratic Constitution.

“More than that. I shall tackle this nation’s problems with a commitment to solving them. I say this not as a boast. I say it based on my record.

“As Lagos governor, I assembled perhaps the most diverse team in any state government. That team was based on competence, not tribal this or regional that.

“It was not based on the attire one wore or the accent one spoke with but on the quality of one’s ideas and contributions to society.

“If given the chance by Almighty Allah, I will operate in the same spirit of inclusiveness and innovation to renew the hope of our people.

“My highest priorities shall be the protection of our land and the prosperity of its people.”

The former Lagos also promised to provide a lasting solution to the almajiri challenge by appointing a special commission on it.

This, he said, is expedient because “every child has the right to an education”.

“It is a social wrong to see them roam the streets or drop out due to poverty,” he added.

The presidential candidate urged the religious leaders to ensure that they preach unity and harmony among their followers rather than division and disunity, saying that is the only way the nation could experience development.

“Religious leaders like you are agents of harmony and hope, not division and disunity.

“All well-meaning Nigerians, regardless of political affiliation, must join hands against violence, hunger, ignorance and bigotry.

“We all must live together. No one has the right to try to lord over the other. Allah stands against such injustice.

“And where Allah stands, all bad things must fall. Mean-spirited politicians – those thinking only of themselves or those who think they mean more than the nation itself – will go to great lengths to deceive or recruit eminent persons to unknowingly preach division and hatred.

“They cannot win with the truth. So, they will try to win with a lie. But a lie never wins in the end. Those they cannot beat with honesty, they seek to beat them with untruth and falsity. They want to turn servants of God into preachers of division and hateful sentiment.”

Meanwhile, Jigawa and Kano state governors Muhammad Badaru Abubakar and Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, described Asiwaju Tinubu as a visionary person who is trustworthy.

Badaru said Tinubu was physically and mentally healthy, contrary to mischievous insinuations.

“People spread fake news about his health status. We that are with him know that he is very healthy. Aside from bodily health, he has very high mental alertness,” he said.

The Jigawa governor recounted how he joined Tinubu on a recent trip to London and Saudi Arabia where they had the stressful lesser hajj ritual and came back to Nigeria without having any rest.

He said Asiwaju “has a deep respect for our people and we have found in him a dependable friend who will not shame us, by the grace of God”.

Ganduje said religious leaders have a role to play in choosing political leadership in the light of their role as guardians of society.

“As people who are after the wellbeing of the society, you have every reason to be interested in who leads the people to greater prosperity,” he said.

He added that Tinubu had over the years demonstrated that he is a fair leader who is not driven by ethnic sentiments.

Some Muslim leaders who spoke at the occasion, including Ustaz Aminu Aliyu Gusau, Sheikh Dr Khalid Aliyu Abubakar, and Malam Tijani Imam Kano, among others, declared support for Tinubu.

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