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Why I shunned debate, by Buhari

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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.



8 Comments
  • Ade Grace

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  • 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

    RUBBISH

  • 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).