I Had no Desire to Run for Public Office – Idahosa
Bishop Isaac Idahosa has made public how he clinched the vice presidential ticket of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP).
At the time of his announcement as the NNPP vice presidential candidate in July, Idahosa stated that he had no desire to run for public office.
He stated this during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, narrating how the party’s standard bearer, Rabiu Kwankwaso, chose him as his running mate.
“If you want me to give a little background about how I came in, during the Sallah break, he (Kwankwaso) called me, ‘Bishop, where are you?’ I said I’m in Lagos. ‘Could you come to Kano so we can have Sallah celebration together?’
“I got into Kano, and a large crowd greeted me. He does this every Sallah, feeding people. He asked me to greet the people, and you know I speak Hausa very well. He said, ‘Bishop, how are you going to greet them, in Hausa or English?’ I said, ‘Hausa.’
“Then we went on, and everyone was agog. He never had to tell me what was on his mind. At about 12 midnight that Sunday evening, he called me. That was about a week to the closure of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) portal,” Idahosa said.
The bishop claimed that Kwankwaso, the former governor of Kano State, spoke with him about the need for a running partner from the South-South and asked for his support, which prompted the priest to enlist certain “fathers of religion.”
Idahosa claims that when the religious leaders requested him to “identify somebody,” he offered suggestions. However, he pointed out that the Monday hunt had come to an end in vain.
“The only one we got said he had limited time to be able to go and seek counsel about that. That was Tuesday already. So, he (Kwankwaso) said on Wednesday I should come to his house at Maitama (Abuja), so I could join in the screening; that’s how he left it. Little did I know that I was going to be screened.
“So, I got there, and there was Elder Buba Galadima, the national chairman and what have you. They said I should sit down. I sat. (They asked me) ‘If you are to be chosen as the running mate to His Excellency, Kwankwaso, what’s your vision for Nigeria?’
“I said, ‘Is that why you brought me? Nobody told me I was coming here for screening. I thought I would join the screening committee as a friend.’ I said, ‘Well if I am to be his running mate, I don’t have any vision.
“‘I am a supporting striker because if I have a vision and I’m bringing my vision to his, then the vision comes to bear. It is his vision, his mind, his thoughts. We’ll have to sit down and rub minds together to run with what he has, and then we’ll see how we go on.’
“Long story short, I was asked to produce my resume. I said, ‘For crying out loud, I’m not looking for a job. I just came to say hello and do Sallah stuff with my friend,’” he stated.
“At about 9 pm on Wednesday, my name was flying on social media: ‘Isaac Idahosa’. Then I called on my principal, ‘Sir, what is happening? My name is all over.’ He said, ‘Just forget about that, just go to bed.’ I said, ‘Okay, sir.’
“Thursday was worse! Everybody, everywhere; my phone was beeping and ringing. Then at about 2 pm, he called and said, ‘Excellency.’ That was the first time he would mention that, qualifying me that way.
“He would always say, ‘Bishop.’ Now, ‘Excellency, congratulations.’ My hands were shaking, my legs were wobbling. I said, ‘Congratulations, what?’ He said, ‘You’re my running mate,’” he said.