The Labour Party (LP) has explained why Peter Obi, a presidential candidate for the party, did not participate in the presidential debate held in Abuja by the Nigerian Elections Debate Group (NEDG).
Diran Onifade, the head of media for the Obi-Datti Campaign Council, stated in a statement on Sunday that Obi’s absence from the NEDG presidential debate was caused by technical difficulties with the aircraft intended to transport him to Abuja.
He claimed that after traveling to Akure, the capital of Ondo State, for an engagement, his principal had to go into hiding to inform the technical crew of the plane intended to transport him.
Therefore, instead of heading to Abuja for the debate, the aircraft crew headed for Lagos because of the said technical issues which was beyond them.
Onifade said: “The Obi-Datti Campaign hereby states that our candidate, Mr Peter Obi, was unable to attend the debate programme following the advice of the technical crew of the aircraft he was travelling in.
“After an engagement in Akure, Ondo State, he meant to head for Abuja for the debate but was advised otherwise due to technical issues with the aircraft, which made the pilot decide to head for Lagos instead.”
Meanwhile, it was learnt that while Obi could not make the debate some senior members of the campaign council like the Director General of the campaign, Balogun Akin Osuntokun, and the campaign manager, Ambassador Oseloka Obaze had gathered at the venue of the debate programme, the International Conference Centre in Abuja, awaiting Obi’s arrival.