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2023: Ezekwesili proffers solution to absence of presidential candidates in pre-election debates

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Oby Ezekwesili

A former Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesil, has offered a solution to the continued absence of presidential candidates in pre-election debates in the country.

The co-convener of the BringBackourGirls Movement was reacting to the absence of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) counterpart, Atiku Abubakar, in Sunday’s presidential town hall series put together by Arise TV in Abuja.

In a series of tweets on her Twitter handle on Wednesday, the ex-minister proposed a class action suit that would compel front-runner presidential candidates in the country to attend debates ahead of the 2023 general elections.

Read also:Ex-Minister, Ezekwesili, attacks Nigerian leaders over silence on ravaging floods

She argued that the debates were important to keep citizens informed about the plans of those jostling to rule them.

Ezekwesili wrote: “I want to co-lead a class-action suit asking the courts to compel all the front-runner Presidential candidates to show up for debates that will better inform the choices of the Nigerian people in the 2023 elections.

“As it stands today, there is annoyingly no constitutional/legal imperative on the presidential candidates to show up for debates. However, one thing we know about democracy is that there are many ways for citizens to collectively signal their priorities for the reform of politics.

“A class action suit compelling presidential candidates to debate shows our preferred conduct from those seeking our votes even when legal lacunae provide them escape. Yes! Collectively going to court on this matter is crucial for that purpose.”

By Abdulkabeer Ambali

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