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Why I shunned debate, by Buhari


APC Presidential candidate ,Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd). Image source ynaija

APC Presidential candidate ,Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd). Image source ynaija

PRESIDENTIAL candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), yesterday clarified why he had avoided going into a debate session with President Goodluck Jonathan on issues surrounding the governance of the country.

Speaking at an interactive session with the Nigerian media executives in Abuja, he assured that he would ensure that the constitution is upheld, including respect for the media, the right to free expression and freedom of speech.

He explained that there was nothing worth debating with the President Jonathan-led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which had failed to live up to the expectations of Nigerians.

According to him, the mere fact that Jonathan had to rely on neighbouring Chad, Niger and Cameroun to tackle the menace of the Islamist terrorist group, Boko Haram, speaks volume of the failure of the PDP led-administration.

At the event were former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State and head of Buhari’s presidential campaign organisation, the Executive Director of The Guardian, Mr. Toke Ibru, and several media executives.

Buhari said: “To be fair to me and to the President, after 16 years of PDP and six years of his (Jonathan) time, is there anything to debate about? Very seriously, you know the condition we are in with our experiences, no matter who you are. So what should I debate there?”

On whether he would consider a national government comprising all interest groups and political parties if elected, he said it was an issue to be decided by the top echelon of the APC because, “this is an issue that cannot be decided by a presidential candidate, it is a serious party issue that must be subjected to thorough discussion.

“Just because I have earned the presidential candidature by winning the primaries doesn’t mean I will impose my personal opinion on an issue as this.

The party hierarchy must participate in important national decision.” Buhari assured that he would abide by the APC manifesto, which is preoccupied with employment generation, infrastructure development and stamping out corrupt practices in the polity.

Prior to the interactive session, he reassured Nigerian media owners and the entire country that if elected, his government would ensure that the constitution is upheld.

Recalling his days as a military ruler, when he signed the obnoxious Decree 4 into law to gag the press, he said such era was far gone as he is now a thorough bred democrat.

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  • Ade Grace

    Protecting Critical Infrastructures

    Security is a global issue, so its
    importance cannot be over emphasized, no wonder the book of life stated that Except
    the LORD watch over city, the watchman but in vain Ps. 127 vs 1, so it is not
    co incidental when God who is our chief security officer also take delight in
    our security arrangement to be put in place and order. The recent attack that
    took place at French office of satirical magazine
    Charlie Hebdo, the recent breach by Omar
    Gonzalez 42 who scaled a fence where he
    ran across the lawn and entered an unlocked door and was tackled inside the
    white house, recent attack on a shopping mall at Abuja and recent stowaway
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    security lapses which underscored
    the risks associated with physical security breaches and the potentially
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    refinery and petrochemical factories courthouses, stadium, schools, Prisons,
    embassies, conference centers, factories etc. While the threat of terrorist or insurgence activity to
    disrupt critical Infrastructure remains ever-present, other hazards such as
    theft and vandalism are more common and represent an additional challenge.

    This message is intended for critical infrastructure owners
    and security professionals who manage and implement security solutions
    addresses these difficulties and offers commonsense advice to protect their
    infrastructures effectively and affordably while meeting several key requirements
    of the acceptable standard, so the need for reliable intrusion detection
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    threats and vulnerabilities of physical attacks on these targets , verify this
    risk assessment with an unaffiliated third party, and then deploy and implement
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    implement physical security upgrades while the team does not prescribe specific
    solutions that the infrastructure should deploy; instead, it provides suggested
    guidance and practices that can help mitigate risks. The concepts as outlined
    in their recommendation should represent a sound and effective security
    practice that suits all facilities tasked with protecting key critical assets.

    While different infrastructure require
    different approach, for example Safeguarding any outdoor assets, whether
    airport perimeters, oil refineries, chemical plants or electrical generating
    station etc often comes down to the same thing, accurate detection and timely
    information about the unfolding event suggests implementing a “systems
    approach” comprising six specific concepts, which are summarized as Detect, Deter , Delay, Assess, Communicate, and Respond, also
    suggests a “Defense in Depth” approach that attempts to “prevent the advance of
    an attacker” using zones of protection over a larger area, which creates an
    opportunity to respond to an event over time, rather than setting up a “single,
    strong defensive line. These layers of protection can start with the perimeter
    fence, surveillance cameras with infrared ray illuminator for night
    capabilities, effective Under Vehicle Scanning System integretable with Road
    Blocker or Bollard System at each entrance and exit route with tire killers,
    Luggage and Body scanners at each entrance of the building. But in our country
    today, you may see conventional and HD cameras in some key assets which is not
    the best recommended systems for these infrastructure has prompted me to look
    into brief details about camera surveillance system for securing our critical
    assets. While video surveillance cameras based on visible light have long been
    established as an effective forensic tool for analyzing what happened after an
    event, there are limitations to what video surveillance can do. Historically,
    it has only provided passive recording of events for future use. Critical asset
    protection demands that intruders are detected as soon as they enter a secured
    area. Such real-time awareness is critical to ensuring a timely response and
    preventing an incident from escalating. As a result, thermal technology has
    become a top choice for detecting intrusions outdoors. These systems, which
    combine thermal sensors with video analytics, are known as smart thermal
    cameras because they never tire, can cover large areas, and see what the human
    eye would miss and also create buffer zones, when provided with accurate alerts
    that thermal cameras generate that can
    make appropriate response decisions accordingly. Using smart thermal cameras
    for perimeter security applications was once seen as a more costly solution
    better suited for government or military applications. Recent developments in
    thermal camera technology provide a new level of detection accuracy while
    making them available at commercial prices. Smart thermal cameras have benefited
    from the same processing advancements that make all modern computing devices so
    powerful, and use this processing to amplify small differences between the
    temperature of a person and the background, accurately detecting intruders even
    in less than ideal conditions. They ignore headlights, reflections off water,
    or other lighting issues that cause false detections with conventional and HD
    cameras. The combination of higher performance and lower costs is rapidly
    expanding the use of thermal cameras for 24/7 security applications

    In conclusion the goal for protecting
    critical substation assets is to employ technology that can provide situational
    awareness of activity about potential threat so that the facilities can initiate
    an appropriate and timely response to prevent wanton destruction of lives and
    properties while we look into other systems next time.

    staffs have experience that can help you choose the right application for your
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    Onaghise Kelly – Security Systems
    & ELV Specialist writes from Megatronix Technology Ltd

  • Biggs Nem

    GMB has spoken like an elder statesman without visionary approach. Saying that for the past 16 years of PDP led administration and 6 years of PGEJ have shown nothing for it is a way of saying one does not mean well for Nigerians until one becomes the president. he has forgotten so soon that our railway system which he didn’t do has been revamped; we now have classic stadium in Uyo; we now have nearly equipped international airports of which he has made use of. Lets deceive ourselves alone instead of misleading the masses. #GEJ4Naija

    • Andy

      why did you vote for Jonathan in 2011 despite that he did not participate in the debate?

      • ukoette ibekwe

        Andy, with your token expression I believe you are Buhari;s stalwart and people like you cry change. Change does not only happen when you win elections. APC is hell bent on Buhari not appearing in a debate, Buhari says there is nothing to debate about. Political debates are not about what your opponent did not do but what the candidate is hoping to do and how he or she will do it if given the opportunity to lead. APC wants the status quo of no debates to continue and they cry change, what kind of change? He is talking about freedom of the press. the media has encouraged, persuaded, cajoled him to debate Jonathan but he has refused. Democracy is supposed to be a government of the people. The people want him to debate and flatten Jonathan but Buhari has refused. He portrays himself as the lion who will devour Boko Haram, yet he is chicken to even debate Jonathan whom he thinks is weak and has nothing to offer.
        What an irony! He fumes and promises fire and brimstone on Boko Haram, yet is afraid to confront Jonathan in a debate. Nigerians scream for change; however, not every change is positive. Nigerians are tempted to have Buhari to be the change agent and may discover that the change will not be a bed of roses.

        • Andy

          Seems you don’t understand the change we are talking about. The change we are saying is not about Buhari or APC but about the government that failed to fulfil promises, appointed people with questionable records into sensitive positions, pretended to be clueless when masses frown at harsh and anti-people policies but swift at using fierce looking soldiers to disperse peaceful protests, pretended to be handicapped in dealing with subsidy fraudsters, meted out wickedness on the northerners and did not care if Boko Haram was killing them or not and, instead, he kept blaming the opposition as if he was not the President.
          If you had a family member who has been killed by the insurgents you would have understood.
          It’s not about Buhari, we want someone else, another party. If Buhari eventually wins and fails to perform, we vote their party out come 2015 because Nigeria deserves better leadership. Nigerians in diaspora deserves to be proud of their country. We don’t want to run away from home any more for greener pastures due to bad leadership.

  • B’FRA Best

    Biggs Nem if Nigeria continue like this under PDP will you be happy? I wonder what you are gaining in seeing Nigerians being deprived and wallowing in poverty and corruption. Nigerians deserve better, we have the resources. Buhari please Gail all this corrupt criminals. I wish you good luck and a successful leadership of Nigeria come March 28.

  • MUkintu


  • Mukhtari

    A presidential ‘debate’ is not a debate like secondary school, Mr president in waiting!.No arguments. It is a civil event where you talk about your own vision and strategic outlay so people can contrast them with your opponents’.outlay. Historically, people who run away from election debates either do not have a defined governing idea or do not want to give specifics that they would be held accountable to. Alternatively, they lack depth and do not want to have to think on their feet in close contrast to an insightful opponent. Which one best describes you GMB. If you don’t debate, you are showing disdain for the electorate whose votes you seek, not Jonathan and that can be a waterloo. Beware the ides of March (+13).