Presidential Candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has again defended his absence from Sunday night’s presidential town hall meeting organized by Arise Television in conjunction with the Centre for Democracy and Development CDD, saying he won’t be railroaded into making media appearances.
Describing the town hall as “poorly organized”, Tinubu also berated the candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and that of the Labour Party LP, Mr Peter Obi whose presidential ambitions he said were dead on arrival.
In a late Monday statement titled “PDP and LP are confused” and signed by Mr Bayo Onanuga, Director, Media and Publicity of the APC Presidential Campaign Council PCC, Tinubu said he already has his campaign plans which he does not intend to alter.
The statement reads; “We read with amusement the ridiculous position of Atiku/Okowa Campaign Council and that of Labour Party/Peter Obi on the absence of our presidential candidate, Asíwájú Bola Ahmed Tinubu, from the poorly organized Town Hall debate session by Arise TV.
“The separate press releases from these two dead-on-arrival presidential campaign offices sought to make an issue out of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s well-thought-out decision to follow his own campaign plan.
“The more absurd of the two positions was the one canvassed by the spokesperson of Atiku/Okowa campaign. The PDP Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar didn’t also attend Arise News Town Hall Meeting.
“Yet his spokesman, out of joblessness and lack of productive venture attacked our candidate, perhaps in pursuit of a media mileage that their campaign badly needs to divert attention from their failing presidential bid.
“We believe that even a palace jester should have a moment of self introspection. If this had been done, the statement would have been unnecessary.
“Instead of PDP to tell Nigerians why its presidential candidate has not returned to Nigeria after their purposeless visit to United States where he and his other 15 peripatetic adults were given a cold shoulder by US senior officials, the spokesperson is busy chasing shadows.
“We want to state again for the attention of both PDP and LP, that Asiwaju Tinubu will not be railroaded into media appearances and debates.
“Asiwaju Tinubu and his running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima have their campaign schedule that they are following and they have been holding conversations with Nigerians at Town Hall meetings and other fora.
“The Tinubu-Shettima Presidential Campaign Council has clearly made its position on debates known in a statement issued by our Director of Public Affairs, Mr. Festus Keyamo, SAN and that position remains.
“We recognize that both PDP and LP have to use Asiwaju Tinubu’s name with the hope that their floundering campaign will gain some traction. Nigerians witnessed the show of shame and despicable exchange on live television between, Mr. Peter Obi, the candidate of LP and Dino Melaye, one of Atiku-Okowa’s palace jesters.
“Nigerians will certainly not vote for candidates and political parties that cannot maintain decorum and basic decency on national television”.