Good morning Nigeria – the Vice Presidential debate which took place yesterday was solid. Now, we need to ask Mr. President (Buhari, the APC flagbearer) to confirm to debate Mr. Atiku (PDP flagbearer) on January 19. While debate is not overly correlated with capacity to offer good governance, yet it forces leaders to learn things and understand things they might not have bothered.
So, the only way to get them to spend time thinking about us (the people) and the economy is to ask them to debate. When that happens, they at least spend time to know Nigeria before they arrive in their duty posts.
To the three men, and two women on the podium yesterday, well done. Now, Jan 19th needs to happen. I want to watch Buhari and Atiku debate: Butiku.
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, said on Friday night that he was keenly looking forward to next month’s presidential debate, moments after watching the vice-presidential debate in Abuja.
Mr Abubakar expressed satisfaction with the showing of his running mate, Peter Obi, at the vice-presidential debate at Transcorp Hilton Hotels.
“I watched with pride as Peter Obi laid out our vision to get Nigeria working again,” Mr Abubakar said on Twitter, adding that he cannot “wait for the presidential debate.”
Mr Obi sparred with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and three other running mates in the five-person debate last night, focused mainly on the economy for about two and a half hours.
Mr Obi was widely praised for demonstrating a good grasp of statistics, and Mr Osinbajo received commendations for his ability to focus on what his government had done as against what the PDP did in its 16 years in power from 1999 to 2015.
Although the debate organisers said last week they expected President Muhammadu Buhari to participate at the presidential debate on January 19, there has been no commitment from the president.
Butiku? A very tall order, at the moment, just a dream. Buhari handlers would give more reasons why their principal may not be there, and less about why he should be there. Unfortunately, most of the electorates that could decide the election don’t watch TV often, let alone debates. So when you hear some politicians speaking very arrogantly about how they will beat the other party merciless, they know how the game is played.
Again, something curious happened, with respect to the other three vice presidential candidates; going by their performances, I am sorry to note that Nigeria doesn’t have any viable alternative to APC and PDP, at the moment, that’s just the reality for now.
But to shake the table small, it could be spectacular to have Obi and Osinbajo as presidential candidates, but this is Nigeria, where dreams are more precious than gold. We are down, but rather than looking up, we are looking for shovel and digger to dig deeper, and then remain in the hole…
Mr Buhari, over to you… Jan. 19!