Waffi Tv Editorial: The culture of organised presidential debates emanated from the United States of America and it’s one of the several cultures we have copied from that great nation.
During presidential elections, it has become customary for the main candidates to engage in a debate. The topics discussed in the debate are often the most controversial issues of the time, and arguably elections have been nearly decided by these debates (e.g., Nixon vs. Kennedy of the United States). Candidates debates are not constitutionally mandated, but it has now become a de facto election process.
Presidential debates are held late in the election cycle, after the political parties have nominated their candidates. The candidates meet in a large hall, before an audience of citizens. The formats of the debates have varied, with questions sometimes posed from one or more journalist moderators and in other cases members of the audience.
The news and most recently social media often anticipate televised presidential debates as a national event of great importance
Although reporters would always look for a winner and loser, viewers and members of the electorate have different perceptions of it, making two simultaneous judgments: Firstly, whether or not the candidate seems popular enough to be president; and secondly, whether one of the candidates is a better choice based on his solutions, ideologues and stratagem to handle the issues he/she has been presented with by the interrogators in attendance.
The debates are targeted mainly at undecided voters; those who tend not to be partial to any political ideology or party, those who are interested in what the candidates have to offer without their(voters) sentiments or biased opinions.
In the just concluded presidential debate for Nigeria’s 2019 Presidential elections in February members of the electoral body who had no prior knowledge of the intentions of the candidates would by now be aware of who and why they are voting. This in “reality” would give the candidates present(Kingsley Moghalu – Young Progressive Party (YPP) , Obiageli Ezekwesili – Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN) and Fela Durotoye – Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN)) an advantage over the two absent( President Muhammadu Buhari – All Progressives’ Congress (APC) and AlhajiAtiku Abubakar – People’s Democratic Party) and might i add “key candidates”,but does it really matter in Nigeria, this is a question that will be answered on February 16th 2019. Good luck to all of our candidates and God bless Nigeria