A former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and the National Technical Adviser to the party’s Presidential Campaign Council, Uche Secondus, has described as a needless distraction, the attack on the publisher and owner of THISDAY Newspapers and Arise Television station, Prince Nduka Obaigbena, by the Media team of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Ahmad Tinubu.
In a statement on Sunday, Secondus said he has followed the issues behind the ongoing media war of words and wondered why the APC presidential media team chose to leave the business of marketing their Principal for which they were appointed and be chasing Obaigbena, who is indisputably an iroko in the media industry.
He said, rather than joining issues with Obaigbena, the APC team should have used the time and energy to position their candidate positively in the eyes of the public.
According to him, “Unless they are surrendering to the town talks that they have nothing to sell in the current political space and have chosen to cause unnecessary distractions.”
Secondus noted that given the role of the Nigerian media in the socio-political development of this country from independence in 1960 and continued in the June 12 democratic struggle that birthed this republic, he expected the media to get involved in some more pragmatic matters not on undesirable squabbles.
“From whatever perspective you want to look at it, Arise TV and THISADAY Newspapers have not gone outside the dictates of their profession in asking a presidential candidate of a ruling party to present himself for public scrutiny.
“It’s indeed an aberration that a person aspiring to rule over 200 million people is dodging from talking to them or answering their questions even from his media establishment,” he stated.
The former PDP boss urged APC media not to cover up if their candidate was seriously challenged in anyway to face public interrogation, because that was what was required to avoid the deceit and propaganda of 2015 that brought the country where it is.
“The health of your candidate should worry you, because it would be unpatriotic to foist on the country unhealthy person for a position that requires complete mental and physical alertness.
“Prince Obaigbena and his media group were acting within the law to demand that APC candidate present himself for questioning either in a debate or Town Hall gathering. It mustn’t be Arise Tv, it can be any other medium but a person seeking public office must face interrogation.
“Even as a politician, who has played much at national level, no one can dismiss the critical role of Prince Obaigbena in the development of media as a catalyst to developments,” Secondus said.
Meanwhile, the PDP Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has called on his supporters not to be complacent with their campaign to oust the APC, because of the Christmas and new year break.
In a statement yesterday, Atiku said, “We must not cut a break on the fact that the APC must not be allowed to come back in 2023, because of their woeful failure.”
Although Atiku said having covered 15 states so far, “It’s a significant milestone. One, because no other party comes close and, two, because our commitment to Recover Nigeria is receiving great attention from the people.
“Of course, we could not have gone this far without your impeccable support. All the successes that we achieved during our state campaigns is on account of the tremendous job that folks like you had done in mobilising the people ahead of our visit.
“But let me tell you that after our rally on Tuesday in Katsina, The Home of Hospitality, our campaign is going on a break for the Yuletide. As your candidate in the next year’s presidential election, I shall continue to keep up with you even in spite of the break.
“I will expect that you too, in kind, shall hold firmly to your support base and even expand the base by the time we resume our rallies in January.”
Chuks Okocha in Abuja