Police deny Obasanjo ‘snub’

Contrary to reports, former President Olusegun Obasanjo did not storm out of an event organised by the Nigeria police in Lagos yesterday, the police claimed Friday.

The police was reacting to widespread reports that Mr. Obasanjo stormed out of a capacity-building event organised by the police because the organisers were behind schedule.

The reports said Mr. Obasanjo condemned the organisers for keeping him waiting and admonished them to always be ready before they call him to a public function.

But in a statement Friday by Kayode Aderanti, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police in charge of Zone II, said the reports were not true.

Mr. Aderanti said reporters at the event “misconstrued” some comments the former president made as “as a swipe against the force” even though he was only demonstrating his “usual jolly nature and world famous penchant for throwing banters.”

Although Mr. Aderanti acknowledged that the event did not kick off on time, he said the former president understood their situation and stayed behind to perform the functions delegated to him.

“Former president Olusegun Obasanjo in his usual fatherly manner and once being a uniformed personnel himself, came into the hall and still went ahead to deliver his remarks as earlier scheduled,” Mr. Aderanti said.

The police chief added that Mr. Obasanjo stayed behind at the Federal Palace Hotel venue of the event to take pictures with guests and accompanied his statement with some of the pictures.

“In fact, the former president took his time to pose for pictures with dignitaries, seminar participants and other people individually (as is evident in the picture used in the said stories) – a clear sign he did not ‘storm’ out of the event as alleged,” he said.

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