Tunde Bakare, serving overseer of the Latter Rain Assembly, has revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari chose him as running mate in 2011, because he wanted a vice-president who can hold the nation together if he dies in power.
Both men contested the election under the platform of the then Congress for Progressives Change (CPC), but lost to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Addressing his congregants in Ogba, Lagos, last month, Bakare said Buhari rejected former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s choice of Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former minister of finance.
He said all what transpired during that period had been documented in the book: ‘Strategic Intervention in Governance’, a book he authored.
“After I was called and I went to Abuja, and I sat with Mr President or General Buhari then, I said why me? ‘I’m not a politician’, ‘I do not belong to any political party’, ‘I am not carrying card of any party, why me’?
“He gave me all the reasons, they are written in the book; Strategic Intervention in Governance. He gave three reasons, but the one that made everyone around me that day to dove their hats was when he said: I am not as young as you think, and even Yar’Adua that is younger is dead.
“In case I die, I know you can hold the nation together. That was when Jim (he didn’t give his surrname) removed his cap and said egbon, you must agree.”
ALL BUHARI’S RUNNING MATES BEFORE 2011 HAD DIED
Bakare said on another day, he sat with Buhari and said, “Sir, I need to understand something before I do anything. Every running mate of yours, including the one that was even your deputy in the military, is dead.
“Ume-Ezeoke is dead, Okadigbo is dead, Idiagbon is dead, I am not about to die?”
Bakare said Buhari told him; “Pastor, you must be very funny, I have never even thought about it.”
“I knew he had nothing to do with their deaths, but that man carries a dimension of grace that if you deal with him, and betray him, you pay with your life,” Bakare said.
“So I said to him, hear me now, ‘I will never betray you, I leave it to you to betray me if you wish to do so’… I’m not kidding you, you don’t know what transpired, for you, it was just campaign.
“Loyalty is a two-way traffic, if you cannot do that with God, forget, you cannot do it with men, you’d betray the cause, somewhere along the line, when things get tough, when they are not as easy as you expect them to be.
“God builds your confidence if you heed to his agreement.”