The presidential candidate has picked a female running mate like he previously announced.
Presidential candidate of the Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN), Fela Durotoye, has announced Khadijah Abdullahi-Iya as his vice presidential running mate for the 2019 presidential election.
Durotoye, a leadership expert, took to his Twitter account (@feladurotoye) early on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 to announce his choice of the law graduate as his running mate. Abdullahi-Iya has an LLB Law degree from the University of Abuja and Masters in Law and Diplomacy from the University of Jos.
According to Durotoye, she founded a variety of social enterprises and businesses and also sits on the board of a few SMEs. She also possesses over 10 years experience in humanitarian and community outreach programs.
He said, "As the Founder/ED of Beyond Mentors Inc. and Beyond Mentors Community Care Initiatives (BMCCi) addresses and prevents poverty from the cradle, especially in Northern Nigeria. BMCCi has an advocacy arm called the Women community of Africa(WCA).
"She established and launched Rags to Riches (R2R) clubs 8 public schools in Kaduna and Abuja extended to out of school programs (IDP Schools) in collaboration with Life Builders Initiatives another NGO in Abuja & has grown to over 181 members.
"Khadijah's objective is to keep finding innovative ways to add value to communities advocating for literacy through fun learning from the cradle, which earned her an award for Excellence; for promoting quality Education In Nig, from the Civil society Action coalition on Education. Her life's goal is to chart a legacy through social impact.
"Khadijah hails from Bida, in Niger state and was born in Kaduna to Alhaji Audu Bida, popularly known as Alhaji Audu Kongila & Hajiya Aisha Sherriff Usman."
Durotoye had disclosed in May that he was actively searching for a female running mate because he believes in empowering women as it is a great way to create a better society.
He said his choice of running mate would be a woman who is quite capable to become president in the event something happens to the president.
He said, "I believe in women. I believe in not only giving women opportunities but support to women and I believe that when you support women, more than half of your society, you can only have a better society.
"So women are not less than men but equal partners to men and, more importantly, if you empower that group of people, you'll have an amazing society.
"The gender distribution and gender balance policy that we have is a 50-50 gender balance and there is a very strong chance that, if everything goes the way I would like it to go, my running mate will be a woman.
"I have been very clear and we're currently in the search for a female vice presidential candidate who will not be chosen just simply because she's female, but she'll be competent to be a president should anything happen to the president.
"That tells you the kind of way I feel about women; I think women should be given the greatest opportunities to do great things."
2019 presidential election
The 2019 presidential election, scheduled for February 16, 2019, is billed to be closely-fought between President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, of the People's Democratic Party (PDP).
Alongside Durotoye in the chasing pack is Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Oby Ezekwesili of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Kingsley Moghalu of the Young Progressives Party (YPP), and Omoyele Sowore of the African Action Congress (AAC).
Others are Tope Fasua of the Abundance Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), Eunice Atuejide of the National Interest Party (NIP), Adesina Fagbenro-Byron of the Kowa Party (KP), Chike Ukaegbu of the Advanced Allied Party (AAP), Hamza Al-Mustapha of the People's Party of Nigeria (PPN), Obadiah Mailafia of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), and many more.
79 candidates will contest in the election, the highest number ever in Nigeria's electoral history.