BREAKING: Atiku, Okowa Pull Out Of Presidential Town Hall Meeting

Organising Committee of the presidential town hall series, on Tuesday announced that the flag-bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and his running mate, Ifeanyi Okowa will not be participating in the series, ahead of the 2023 general elections.

The event is organised by Original Daria Media concept, and supported by the MacArthur Foundation, NTA and YouTube.

The Candidates is a two-hour live televised town hall meeting series of the Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates of six leading political parties.

These parties were selected using a combination of editorial judgement, aggregated polls by the Centre for Democracy and Development, CDD, occupation of elective offices and presence across the country.

Prince Adewole Adebayo and his running mate, Yusuf Buhari, of the Social Democratic Party participated in the series on November 17, 2022.

The presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, Mr. Omoyele Sowore and his running mate, Barrister Haruna Garba Magashi were featured on November 18, 2022.

Sen. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso and his running mate, Bishop Isaac Idahosa of the New Nigeria Peoples Party were featured on November 19, 2022, while Mr. Peter Obi and his running mate, Dr. Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed, of the Labour Party featured on November 21, 2022.

However, Atiku and his running mate, Okowa who are supposed to feature on the programme on Tuesday, November 22, 2022, pulled out due to “unavoidable conflicts”.

This was made known in a statement posted on the social media handles of the organisers on Tuesday.

“Due to unavoidable conflicts, Alh. Atiku Abubakar and his running mate, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa of the People’s Democratic Party, will not be participating in The Candidates Presidential Town Hall Series,” the statement reads.

Meanwhile, Bola Tinubu and his running mate, Sen. Shettima Kashim of the All Progressives Congress are scheduled to appear on the programme on November 23, 2022.

Atiku also failed to show up at a town hall meeting for presidential candidates organised by Arise Television and the Centre for Democracy and Development.

Okowa, who is the Delta state governor and vice-presidential candidate of the PDP, was in attendance to represent the party’s presidential candidate.

Commenting on the absence of the PDP presidential candidate at the Arise TV town hall meeting, Okowa said Atiku got permission from the organisers to be away.

The Delta governor said: “He (Atiku) is outside the country. We duly obtained the permission of the organisers for him to be represented.

“When it is time for debates, we will get into it. But this time, it is a town hall. Atiku has asked me to represent him.”

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