The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, has challenged his counterpart in the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to a debate.
Atiku, who spoke to Tribune through his spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, insinuated that Tinubu was avoiding debates and media interviews because he didn’t want to answer questions about his past.
He said Tinubu ought to make himself available for scrutiny by Nigerians whom he desired to rule.
Ologbondiyan said: “We challenge Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu to an unscripted debate with Atiku Abubakar because Tinubu has been dodging debates and even interviews with the media.
“He has been organising private sessions with groups which our campaign believes are all choreographed in his favour. At most of these platforms, he either reads a prepared script or speaks through proxies who respond to ques- tions on his invitation.
“It is perceptible that the presidential candidate of the APC is not prepared to answer questions arising from the litany of allegations surrounding his past. “But Nigerians deserve to hear from him as a candidate that desires to govern them.
“He should prepare himself to respond to their questions and make himself available for interviews in the public space. Atiku Abubakar has had several engagements like these, having prepared himself for leadership roles.”
On his chances in the contest with Tinubu, Atiku’s spokesman boasted that the PDP candidate would defeat the APC candidate hands down in a free and fair contest.
He declared: “Tinubu does not have the requisite sup- port that can deliver him in a presidential election. With the type of rejection that is greeting him in various states, there is no way he can secure the required 25 per cent of votes in 2/3 of states.
“Even in Lagos, Tinubu has lost considerable foothold after being demystified as a failed and oppressive leader with litany of allegations. The traditional support that would have come to his party has now been balkanised by leading parties.
“So, where will Tinubu draw the support from when the South-West, where he played his politics, has almost become a lost ground?
“Atiku is the only candidate in the 2023 race who has the capacity of winning the consti- tutionally required 25 per cent of votes cast in 2/3 of states across the federation,” he said.