By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA – The decision by President Muhammadu Buhari and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar to boycott the 2019 Presidential debate organised for the various party candidates contesting the polls has not gone down well with some notable Nigerians.
The latest to add their voices to the development are former Education Minister and National Vice Chairman (South-West) of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Professor Tunde Adeniran and ace human rights activist and constitutional lawyer, Mike Ozekhomhe.
Speaking with our correspondent yesterday, Adeniran chided the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidates for failing to take the advantage offered by the debate to push through their visions for Nigeria.
“They have no regard for Nigerians and democratic principles. They were afraid of being scrutinized and exposed. It’s a shame of a nation,” Adeniran said.
For Ozekhome, Atiku’s refusal to participate in the debate because of President Buhari’s absence was rather unfortunate.
He said: “I hold the president responsible for the whole thing. Atiku flew down quickly from the United States of America, USA, to debate with him,after PMB’s disastrous outing even with his own monologue “debate.”
Alas,on getting to Congress hall of Hilton hotel, Buhari was absent. So Atiku, his main rival decided to also leave. But Atiku should have stayed back,take part in the debate and rub in his absence as a slight on Nigerians and also symptomatic of someone who has no legacy to defend.”