2019: PDP challenges Buhari to debate Atiku



The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused President Muhammadu Buhari of reneging on his promise to “lead the fight from the front” against the Boko Haram.

The opposition party also challenged the president to a debate with its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.

The opposition party alleged that the neglect of troops fighting in the North-east ed to the recent killings of soldiers.

The party made this known in a statement by its national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan.

On 18 November, the Al Barnawi faction of Boko Haram attacked the 157 Task Force Battalion based at Metele in the northern part of Borno State, killing scores of Nigerian troops.

The military authorities are yet to give the specific number of casualties.

Mr Ologbondiyan asked President Buhari to explain why he has been allegedly insensitive to the killing of citizens and soldiers by marauders and insurgents, particularly, given allegations that he has been ‘distracting’ the Armed Forces by “dragging them to participate in his re-election campaign”.

“Nigerians recall that at the time our troops were being attacked by insurgents, our service chiefs were attending the launch of President Buhari’s “Next Level” campaign mantra, ‘stolen’ from a foreign institute.

“Nigerians await President Buhari to answer for the humongous corruption in his administration; why he has failed to fulfill any of his 2015 campaign promises and why he cannot show any key development project he initiated and completed in his three and half years in office.”

The PDP also challenged the president to a live, one-on-one debate with its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on critical sectors of the country.

“Nigerians are aware that President Buhari has been mortally afraid of facing our candidate, Atiku Abubakar, in a general debate organised by independent bodies.

“For this, the PDP grants him the liberty to choose a venue, date and time convenient to him to face our candidate before a neutral panel.

“President Buhari must face Atiku Abubakar in person, as Nigerians are not ready to accept any representation, whosoever, from him.

“If, as a Commander-In-Chief, Mr President cannot face a political debate, how then can he vigorously engage international competitors?

“Nigerians can now see why our nation has been under peril in the last three and half years.”

The opposition party added that Mr Buhari should be ready to face his failures and avail Nigerians of his sectoral performance scorecards, as well as, present his future blueprint, “to enable the electorate weigh him alongside the party’s presidential candidate”.

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