An interview by Uba Sani, the political adviser to Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna, generated controversy on Saturday.
Mr. Sani was accused of justifying the attack on senators and journalists at the Nigeria Union of Journalists secretariat in Kaduna.
The attack occurred last Sunday as two senators, Shehu Sani and Suleiman Hunkuyi, addressed journalists.
Both senators, especially Mr. Sani, are political opponents of the governor, thus leading to allegations Mr. El-Rufai sponsored the thugs who carried out the attack.
The governor, however, promptly condemned the attack, and promised investigations.
However, the governor’s political adviser, Uba Sani, was accused of justifying the attack in an interview granted in Hausa and partly played on a local Nagarta radio in Kaduna.
Mr. El-Rufai’s spokesperson, Samuel Aruwan, denied the statement credited to the governor’s aide.
“Reports quoting Malam Uba Sani justifying the unfortunate incident at the secretariat of Nigeria Union of Journalists is not only FALSE but MISCHIEVOUS,” Mr. Aruwan said in a message sent to PREMIUM TIMES.
“It’s part of the grand design to blackmail and crush to the ground anything related to the Governor and Government of Kaduna State.”
PREMIUM TIMES has now obtained the audio of the interview by Uba Sani and has transcribed it into English.
In the interview, the political adviser denied that the state government was responsible for the attack, and said interim findings by the state indicated the thugs may have been aggrieved supporters of some of the politicians.
Read the transcript of the brief interview below:
Q: They are accusing the state government of masterminding the attack on them especially you who is the governor’s adviser on politics, how would you respond about that.
Uba Sani: What they have been saying has no bases and it is just a lie.
Just like you know politics is not madness. If you are voted to represent the people, it became mandatory for you to always visit them. One should come and look after them, provide for them and fulfil all the promises he has made to them. Because you might have promised them something.
What we find out after investigation was that, when the Executive Governor heard about it which he was not happy with, he ordered a thorough investigation. He does not want any trouble happening in the state and as you also know he was the first person to condemn the action of the youth.
Result of the investigation ordered by the governor even though it is still ongoing is that some of the elected people that where there, note, not all of them, few among them never returned from Abuja to look after this youth that have worked for them after using them that time.
They told the youth that if they were elected, some of them spoke over the radio making these promises which we heard, that as soon as they get to Abuja they will be sending them money on monthly basis.
And now, these youth have waited for over two years without receiving anything and since then they have been targeting them.
What we then think happened was the youth attacked them to demand for the monies promised them and fight started; and this is what the preliminary result of the investigation shows. And that they also said ‘as a senator I will be getting about N20 million every month’. And this same person who you promised to give money every month understands that you pocket N20 million while he is not getting anything and as you earlier told him that the money you are getting is supposed to be given to him, that could be the reason they now attacked them.
From my own point of view, they are the same people who organised these boys, promised to give them money; and two years later they did not receive anything from them, this is what the preliminary result of the investigation shows.
However. it is just part of the result that we are getting. The investigation is still ongoing.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The headline and body of this story has been edited to reflect the actual statements made by Uba Sani.
Listen to the Audio here: Saurari abin da Uba Sani ya ce kan harin da aka kai NUJ