Former vice-president, Atiku Abubakar, has reacted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)’s call for debates among candidates running for political offices in 2019.

INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, stated this while delivering a speech titled, ‘The role of the media in the Nigerian electoral process,’ at the 69th General Assembly of the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria in Lagos on Wednesday.

Yakubu said the debates were a vital part of the democratic process as they helped to guide the decision of voters.

“Such debates are necessary for deepening democracy by promoting civil discourse and providing a platform for candidates to articulate their positions on public policy issues. They also allow the public to judge aspiring candidates for political office under pressure and evaluate their arguments in competition with other candidates.

“Debates also serve an important role of demonstrating to the aspiring candidates that democracy is about standing before the public and answering their questions,” Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said.

Meanwhile, writing on his verified Twitter page, Atiku said: “Kudos to @inecnigeria for recognising debates are a vital part of the democratic process.

“Our democracy & governance will be better enriched when voters have the opportunity to make the needed distinction in the offerings of those who apply to govern them.”

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