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Anambra 2013: 23 governorship candidates square up in debate Oct 29

By The Rainbow

Ahead of the November 16 governorship election in Anambra State, the  Nigerian Election Debate Group has arranged a public debate for the the 23 candidates cleared by the Independent National Electoral Commission  for the election.

The debate, which will be televised live on national networks, holds in the last weeks of October.

The Chairman of NEDG, Chief Taiwo Alimi, said pre-debate press conference in Awka on Thursday, that the group had already met and discussed with the political parties fielding candidates for the election.

NEDG has representation from the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria; Nigeria Guild of Editors; Nigeria Union of Journalists; Alliance for Credible Elections; Nigerian Bar Association; National Coalition of Youth Professionals; and the Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria.

Alimi said the debates are designed to present to the Anambra State electorate the opportunity to have firsthand information on the plans of governorship candidates and the strategies of implementation before a radio and television audience.'.

According to him,  the debates, which would include the running mates to the candidates, would be issue-driven and each candidate would speak on a number of identified areas germane to state development and the sustenance of democracy in Nigeria.

Alimi said October 22 had been chosen for the debate of the deputy governorship candidates, while the governorship candidates would square up against one another on October 29.

The grand finale of the debates, which Alimi said would involve those picked by an opinion poll among voters, would hold on October 31.

Alimi said that the debate would hold at the Women Development Centre, adding that the audience would not be allowed to cheer or jeer the debaters.

He assured that NEDG was not receiving any support from government, both at the national and state levels. Alimi, however, said the NEDG was being supported by the UNDP, the National Democratic Institute, the National Orientation Agency and INEC.

Major candidates in the election include Senator Chris Ngige of the All Progressives Congress, Willie Obiano of All Progressive Grand Alliance and Nicholas Ukachukwu of Peoples Democratic Party.