The All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council (PCC), has said its candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, will not attend the presidential town hall organised by Arise Television in collaboration with the Centre for Democracy and Development.
It was reported that the December 4 meeting, which will focus on education, health care, poverty and human capital, is expected to host Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar; his counterpart in the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi; and the presidential candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Rabiu Kwankwaso.
The PCC Director of Media and Publicity, Bayo Onanuga, in a statement on Friday, said the management of the station did not consult the candidate or the council before he was scheduled to appear.
He said; “Our attention has been drawn to an advertisement by Arise News in connection with a town hall meeting scheduled for December 4. We are surprised that the TV station listed our candidate, Bola Tinubu, as a participant when there was no prior consultation with him and his aides and no consent from the candidate obtained for the advertisement.’’
“We deem this as professionally wrong and reckless. No media organisation should arrogate to itself the right to railroad any candidate to fit into its agenda.”
“The busy and hectic campaign schedules of Asiwaju Tinubu will not permit him to honour all invitations from different radio and TV stations for debate and or Town Hall meetings hence our decision for him not to start with one media organisation and later ignore the others.''
“In the absence of a unified and mutually acceptable all parties and all candidates platform, our candidate has been speaking directly to Nigerians, since President Muhammadu Buhari launched Tinubu’s Action Plan for a Better Nigeria.''
“To date, over seven town hall meetings with strategic sectors have been held across the geopolitical zones, where the candidate and his running mate have spoken about their programmes.''
“These direct engagements will continue before the election on 25 February 2023.''
“We, therefore, urge Arise News to stop using our candidate’s name or portrait in its advertisement, forthwith.”