Missed match

Leadership can be won by the best communicator. During a national election, debate among persons aspiring for the highest government position is held to demonstrate the candidates’ speaking ability and intelligence to help voters make their choice.

However, there is no perfect debate, in as much as there is no perfect debater. One example is last week’s debate between United Kingdom’s former finance minister Rishi Sunak and British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss on TalkTV, as part of the selection of the Conservative party’s new leader, who in turn replaces disgraced Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Halfway into the hour-long mudslinging event, an unexpected interruption happened that eventually forced organizers to suspend the debate. It was not a technical glitch that cut short the Sunak-Truss face-off though.

There was a sound of crashing that engulfed the broadcast, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported. TalkTV’s political editor and debate moderator Kate McCann fainted and collapsed.

In Kenya, a debate was organized between Deputy President William Ruto, 55, and former prime minister Raila Odinga, 77, both of whom are vying for the post of prime minister in next year’s elections.

Ruto was raring to bash his rival in the debate where corruption was among the expected topic. But Odinga, who is supported by sitting President Uhuru Kenyatta, surprised Ruto without uttering one word.

Odinga decided to take part in a televised town hall meeting in the capital Nairobi with “ordinary Kenyans,” his spokesperson said, according to AFP.

On debate day on 26 July, Ruto found himself alone on stage, opposite an empty pulpit, fielding questions from two journalists.

WJG WITH AFP @tribunephl_wjg

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