#tweetdebate between APC and PDP

It is evidential that corruption is one of Nigeria’s biggest challenges. Local and International observers alike are aware of the concerning level of corruption in the country. Billions of Dollars meant for infrastructural development have been misappropriated and mismanaged. It is in this light that TapNitiative considered it crucial, as part of their governance and democracy program, to create a way to address this issue.

As a solution, TAP Nitiative pioneered a tweet debate between members of the All Progressive Congress (APC) party and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) party. It was held on the 18th of December 2018 from 1pm to 3pm. The debate provided a platform for these two political parties to portray the tactics they hope to employ to demonstrate political will in the anti-corruption movement.

The debaters involved were Gbenga Olorunpomi (@GbengaGOLD), Senior Special Assistant, Electronic Media, to the Governor of Kogi State, who represented APC, while Ilemona Onoja (@I_Am_Ilemona), former spokesperson for the defunct Bukola Saraki Presidential Campaign Organisation represented the PDP.

The ground rules of the debate were first set out to ensure a smooth course. TapNitiative, as the moderators of the debate, relayed the questions directed at one debater who would then tweet a response. Each member was allocated the space of 3 tweets in a thread format to answer a question, after which the opponent is then given the opportunity to counter the point made. Then a reply from the first debater.

Questions generated shed light on how the misgovernance of the current administration has directly influenced Nigeria’s economic downturn and both party’s approach to a whistle blowing policy. In Onaja’s words “The govt’s ‘freeze/accuse first & investigate later’ approach to fighting corruption … has frightened investment is critical sectors of the economy and has dissuaded private sector spending in many quarters…” However Olorunpomo disagreed with the sentiment stating in his opinion that the Foreign Direct Investment in Nigeria has “increased by 435.64 USD Million in the second quarter of 2018.”

The twitter debate was overall a great success with superb participation from the twitter public. People were quick to call out and correct any of the debaters who either referenced false/misleading data or incorrectly recalled certain historical incidences. Followers also noted their accordance or discord by commenting and retweeting answers provided by the debaters. With …. (data analytics). The event was also covered by reputable newsletter such as Sahara Reporters.

From the Tweet Meet with EFCC to this twitter debate, TapNitiative has been on the frontline of pioneering innovative forums to discuss political and societal issues concerning the Nigerian public. With the presidential elections on the way, the public should remain on the lookout for more events to come.

To follow the event and its success please do follow us on our twitter handle @TAP-Nitiative

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