APC is shielding Buhari’s Intellectual Laziness – Fani-Kayode

By Post Nigeria January 31, 2015 13:05

APC is shielding Buhari’s Intellectual Laziness – Fani-Kayode

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Presidential Campaign Organisation has said the unwillingness of the All Progressives congress, APC, to participate in the Presidential debate being organised by the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria, BON, is evidence of its candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari’s, “intellectual laziness and inability to constructively engage contemporary national issues in a live television and radio debate”, and is an attempt by the party to shield its candidate from Nigerians and the international audience.

Chief Femi Fani-Kayode Director of Media and Publicity of the Campaign Organisation, pointed out that the APC knew that General Buhari “will flunk it if he is subjected to the rigors of debate on issues of national governance and development.”

Fani-Kayode said that he was aware that the APC had turned down a request for a debate from an international news channel out of concern for Buhari’s intellectual acuity and instead offered Prof Yemi Osinbajo, their Vice Presidential candidate, whom they claim had the capacity to represent the party brilliantly.

Fani-Kayode said: “We have just read a report in the media credited to the APC Presidential Campaign Organisation that the party would not allow its candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari, to participate in the radio and television presidential debate organised by the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria, BON,

“The APC accused the organisers of the debate of unhidden bias and campaign of calumny by some key organisers of the programme against the corporate political interest of the party and its candidates,

“Whilst we will not bother ourselves with the many reasons adduced by the APC, we wish to state that we see the APC decision as an attempt to shield its presidential candidate from displaying his intellectual laziness and inability to constructively engage contemporary national issues in a live television and radio debate,

“We had envisaged that the APC would be reluctant to expose General Buhari to the rigors of a live television debate because the opposition party knows that its candidate will flunk it. If the APC truly believes that it is a party of progressive intellectuals as it claims it should allow General Buhari to prove that at the debate,

“Should the APC fail to participate in the debate, it would also show the disdain both the party and its candidate have for the Nigerian people, denying them the opportunity to make informed choices on the basis of what each candidate will articulate as propositions on issues that will be raised,

“We are convinced that General Buhari does not have what it takes to sustain a coherent argument on germane issues of governance and development.

“We challenge General Buhari to a debate on any national and international medium of mass communication and our candidate, President Goodluck Jonathan will be ready to participate.

“On the other hand, President Jonathan’s running mate, Vice President Namadi Sambo is also ready to participate in the debate and any other debate. Our presidential candidate and his running mate will not raise flimsy and escapist excuses such as “unhidden bias” and the like, since we believe that they are well-rounded intellectuals who have been prepared by their experience in office to answer any question under the sun on the governance of our nation.”

Chief Dr. Chekwas Okorie, the Presidential candidate of the United Progressive Party, UPP, also described the former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari as a disappointment for refusing to participate in the Presidential debate.

According to Chief Dr. Chekwas Okorie, the Presidential debate was a unique event in the current development of democracy in Nigeria that should be encouraged and not boycotted.

In the statement signed by the Director-General of his campaign organisation, Dr. Ugorji Okechukwu Ugorji, the UPP flag-bearer urged Buhari, “to reject his advisors’ voices and show up for the debate”.

Among the reasons given by the APC for their non participation in the presidential debate being organized by Nigeria Election a Debate Group (NEDG) stipulated for February 8, 2015 was the composition of its board.

Okorie however said he did not find the excuse given by the APC for withdrawing from the debates convincing enough and urged General Buhari to reject his advisors’ voices and show up for the debates, as that is what the nation and the international community expect of him.