Contrary to claims making the rounds and a video that recently surfaced online on Abubakar Atiku declaring his intentions to run for presidency in 2019, the one time Vice President has stated that such video is a product of the ‘merchants of fake news’.
According to him, the video was based on clips from his 2011 political race.
Speaking on Friday, the former vice-president said the video was a “bad job of bad people with bad intentions.”
He said such propaganda was being deliberately promoted by political opponents in order to create acrimony, who are “incompetent and bumbling political novices who cannot see the loopholes in their own stories.”
Atiku advised those involved in such “laughable and unintelligent propaganda of lies and intentional mischief to find something useful to do with their time instead of using his name to achieve their malicious political objectives.”
He explained, “While fake news merchants don’t bother about ethics and their reputation”, the media has more to lose if they take stories from such disreputable groups without verification.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said the ‘news’ of President Buhari’s trip to the United States next year is fake news and has called o Nigerians to disregard the news.
In a statement signed by the Special Adviser to the minister, Mr Segun Adeyemi, The minister said one of the numerous parody Twitter accounts in his name — “@MohammedLai”, was used to announce that President Buhari would leave Nigeria for the U.S. on Monday ”to condole with President Donald Trump over the floods in Houston”.
“This is a 2015 NTA News video that was repackaged to look current, and to give the impression that the President left Daura, where he is celebrating Eid el-Kabir, directly for New York.”
“Numerous parody accounts have been opened in my name on the two platforms, when indeed I have no Twitter or Facebook account.”
Referring to a similar recent incident where a parody account in the minister’s name criticised embattled Senator Dino Melye, Mohammed added that “fake news, disinformation and hate speech are the antics of the naysayers, those who are pathologically opposed to this administration. That is why we are urging Nigerians to be more discerning and to double check any information emanating from Social Media.”