© 2018 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Sowore dares Buhari, others to national debate
PRESIDENTIAL candidate of the newly registered Africa Action Congress (AAC), Omoyele Sowore has challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to a debate, saying that’s the only way he can convince Nigerians to vote for him.
Omoyele gave the challenge during an interview on Channels Television, on Wednesday night. He said persons running for a public office should be bold enough to address the people and make known to them what they intend to do when they get to power.
During the campaigns for the 2015 general election, the All Progressives Congress (APC) boycotted the presidential debate organised by the Nigerian Election Debate Group (NEDG), claiming that the exercise was fraught with irregularities and errors.
The party said it was not comfortable with the organisations that made up the NEDG, which included the Broadcast Organisation of Nigeria (BON), the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), and the Africa Independent Television (AIT).
But Sowore said such a scenario should not occur again if the presidential debate is to be taken seriously.
“If want you to be more serious, you should be bringing these presidential candidates to debate us. Buhari should be brought out. The media should force them out of their hiding. Let them come and debate the future of Nigeria,” Sowore said.
“The alternative is here, that is what we should be debating. We should be talking about the fresh ideas that we are bringing on the table. In Nigeria, when we have people like us who have capacity, character, and integrity. We’ve got stamina, intellect, history, and pedigree.
“Young people are here to take their country to the next level of prosperity. We want to say goodbye to poverty, incompetence and lackluster kind of leadership that we’ve had in Nigeria,” he said.
Activities for the 2019 general election has been kicked off by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with the release of the election schedule on Friday, August 17.
It is not clear yet whether President Buhari will participate in the election debates this time, especially now that majority of the institutions that organised the previous debate, which the APC complained about, are now under the party’s control.