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Stats: 14,989 members, 53,337 Topics, 12,364 Comments. Date: December 15, 2018, 12:42 am

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Ahead of the 2019 presidential election, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to a live, one-on-one debate with its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on critical sectors of the nation’s economy.

PDP accused President Buhari of neglecting troops fighting in the North-East and reneging on his promise to “lead the fight from the front,” which it said has resulted in the vulnerability and killing of soldiers by insurgents.

The All Progressives Congress, APC, in a swift reaction, described PDP’s presidential candidate, Atiku, as leading “a gang of selfish and mercantile politicians,” who cannot withstand the credentials of its candidate President Buhari.

In a statement by its spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, PDP said Nigerians are aware that President Buhari is “afraid of facing our candidate, Atiku Abubakar, in a general debate organised by independent bodies. For this, PDP grants him the liberty to choose a venue, date and time convenient for him to face our candidate before a neutral panel.

“President Buhari must face Atiku in person, as Nigerians are not ready to accept any representation from him. If, as a Commander-in-Chief, Mr. President cannot face a political debate, how then can he vigorously engage international competitors?”

PDP also tasked the President to muster the courage to “face his failures and avail Nigerians of his sectoral performance scorecards, as well as present his future blueprint, if any, to enable the electorate weigh him alongside our presidential candidate.”

There’s no credible opposition — APC

Reacting, APC, in a statement by Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena, said: “From silly conspiracies on the shape of the President’s ear, a ludicrous allegation of a presidential body double named Jubrin from Sudan, tales on the #NextLevel- Nigeria campaign and the rested certificate issue, Nigerians have been entertained by the comical displays of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

“It is now clear that we have no credible opposition political party, but a gang of selfish and mercantile politicians that will do anything to return to elective office.”

The ruling party also alleged that the Dubai meeting attended by Atiku and other PDP leaders was “a last-ditch effort to raise presidential campaign cash from foreign financiers by mortgaging key national economic assets, particularly the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.”



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