It is all systems go The Deputy Presidential debate as it remains  Uncertain whether Gachagua will attend

It is all systems go The Deputy Presidential debate as it remains Uncertain whether Gachagua will attend

BY KORIR JUMA,NAIROBI, 18TH JULY,2022-The organizers of the Presidential debate have told participants in the Deputy and Presidential showcase that their absence will amount to “disrespect to the Kenyan voters and their time.”

The Deputy Presidential debate is scheduled for Tuesday and already the Kenya Kwanza candidate Rigathi Gachagua has been non-committal on whether he will honor the invite.

President of the Kenya Editors Guild (KEG) Churchill Otieno on Monday urged all candidates to “create time” and avail themselves for the debate if they respect the voter and their time.

“We believe at the end of the day that they will respect the voter and their time. On Tuesday there will be no other conversation but one of assessing who is best suited to hold office and so they should create time,” Otieno said during an interview on Citizen Television.

The Kenya Kwanza Presidential campaign secretariat on Friday revealed that its candidates will make independent decisions on whether or not to attend presidential debates.

The alliance presidential flag bearer William Ruto who has been vocal on citing alleged media biasness has to date given no indications that he will attend the presidential debate slated for July 26.

“We believe that the person at the centre the real guest on a debate night is the Kenyan especially that one who has chosen to be a voter,” Otieno said.

Otieno underscored that “leaders have to be accountable and the way to demonstrate that one is willing to be accountable to the people is by subjecting themselves so that there platforms can be tested.”

The Deputy Presidential debate and that of the President will be held in two tiers just as was witnessed in the Nairobi gubernatorial race.

In tier one of the debate on Tuesday, Roots Party Deputy Presidential candidate Justina Wamae and Agano’s Party Deputy Presidential candidate Ruth Mucheru take the stage first.

In the second tier debate, Gachagua and Azimio Deputy Presidential candidate Martha Karua will face off in a battle of ideas.

In a past interview, Karua confirmed that she will honor the debate.

During the debate, candidates will be tasked in five major areas which the organizers have not disclosed.

In the debate, Otieno stated that its structure will slightly change with Kenyans given an opportunity to pose questions.

The debate is organized jointly by the Media Owners of Kenya (MOK), Media Council of Kenya (MCK) and the Kenya Editors Guild (KEG).

This will be the third televised presidential debate in the country, the first being in 2013.

In the 2017 presidential debate, President Uhuru Kenyatta kept off but it still went on.

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