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Uhuru, Raila should not skip TV debates

President Uhuru Kenyatta. Uhuru and Raila should  agree to face one another in a TV debate. file photo | nmg
President Uhuru Kenyatta. Uhuru and Raila should agree to face one another in a TV debate. file photo | nmg 

Let’s all hope that the two frontrunners in the August 8 presidential contest - President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga - will agree to face one another in the planned televised debates.

Started in 2013, televised presidential debates have become a defining moment in our electioneering calendar.

From the noisy politics and intemperate exchanges at campaign rallies, you move the presidential candidates to a forum where members of the public can assess their sincerity and belief in what they want to achieve and their deep knowledge of the burning issues of the day.

One can dismiss the debates as talking shops, but you must agree that when you bring presidential candidates together at a place where members of the public can see them shaking hands and hug, hear them exchange pleasantries, reminisce about the good old days when they worked together and refer to one another as ‘brother’ on national TV; the psychological impact can be very huge.