The Director of Public Affairs and Spokesperson of the Tinubu/Shettima Presidential Campaign Council, Festus Keyamo, has given reasons why the candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, may not attend any presidential debates before February’s presidential election.
This comes as Tinubu was failed to attend the presidential debate organised by Arise Television and a civic group on Sunday.
In a statement on Sunday, Keyamo explained that Tinubu did not attend to avoid “selective appearance.” According to him, various media outlets have indicated interest to host such events, however, the presidential candidate has no plan to attend any but prefers to speak to Nigerians directly.
Keyamo also noted that the busy and hectic campaign schedule of Tinubu is one of the reasons for his absence.
“Firstly, many radio and TV networks in Nigeria have indicated interest to host such debates and out of deference to other TV and radio stations, our candidate will not be making selective appearances in some networks, whilst ignoring others. As President of Nigeria, by the Special Grace of God, he intends to treat all persons and businesses fairly and equally.
“Secondly, the busy and hectic campaign schedules of Asiwaju Tinubu will not permit him to honour all such invitations by different radio and TV networks, hence our decision for him not to start with one TV station and later ignore others.
“Thirdly, our candidate had long before now realised the importance of speaking directly to Nigerians and shortly after unfolding his Action Plan as President embarked on Town Hall meetings beginning with his interaction with the Business Community and other stakeholders in Kano followed by the Town Hall meeting and presentation by experts last week in Lagos. Tomorrow, he will be interacting with Agro and Commodity Groups in Minna, Niger State.
“Whilst we thank Arise TV for the invitation, we want to assure Nigerians that we shall continue to hold these debate groups and Nigerians in high esteem. Nigerians will hear from our candidate loud and clear through other forums.
“Lastly, out of profound respect for Nigerians, we urge all our party structures and supporters at the grassroots to continue to organise town hall meetings to educate Nigerians on the Action Plan of our candidate as we believe a grassroots-approach to reach Nigerians will also be more profound.”