A Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has said the declaration by President Muhammadu Buhari making the national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, leader of his campaign team is deceitful.
The spokesperson for the group, Yinka Odumakin, said the President should not use that as an excuse to avoid the Presidential debate, adding that it could spell doom for his re-election bid.
Buhari, while inaugurating the APC Presidential Campaign Council in Abuja had said he was handing over the campaign to Tinubu so that governance would not suffer.
He said, “Even though we have only 40 days, this campaign is going to tax us all because we intend to touch all corners of our great and vast country. But I must also add that though we will all be deeply involved, I would like to assure the nation that I will do my part without making governance or my work suffer. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, my co-chairman, will be fully in charge and is going to be on 24-hour vigil.
“That is to say the operational buck of this campaign stops at his table, and I, therefore, urge all of us in the leadership of this campaign, in the field operations on the campaign trail and in the secretariat to consult with Asiwaju whenever guidance is needed.”
Odumakin, who spoke to our correspondent on the telephone on Monday, said the statement was deceitful.
He said, “I think the whole thing is just to make Tinubu feel good and think he is being reckoned with. But in any case, it is said that those who don’t learn from history will repeat it.
“This confirms that there are political forces that see some personalities at desperate times as people they can just toy with and once they dangle some carrots before them, there will be no problem.
“But if he tries to avoid the debate, it cannot work. Nigerians will not be wise to vote for anybody that is not ready to debate.”