The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has denied reports attributing a comment describing Nigeria’s president-elect, Bola Tinubu as a drug baron to the immediate-past Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi.
A spokesperson for the party in the state, Darlington Nwauju, who issued the denial in a statement Friday, said Mr Amaechi, a former Rivers State governor and the party’s leader in the state, never linked Mr Tinubu to drug trafficking within or outside the country.
Mr Nwauju was reacting to a report published on Facebook by a news medium – Dailymail gist.
The news medium reported that Mr Amaechi had said that Mr Tinubu would have been disqualified for drug trafficking if the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had done the proper screening.
Refuting the report, Mr Nwauju said such “claptraps are the handiwork of fifth columnists” whom he said do not wish the former minister well. He added that the former Rivers governor “has no personal angst against the President-elect.”
“We have uncovered a hatchet job carried out by a faceless online medium crediting our leader, the former Transport Minister, Mr Amaechi, with comments questioning the role of the APC and INEC over the screening/qualification of the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“We want to make it abundantly clear that at no time did our leader make such demonic comments whether in private or public to query the qualifications of the President-elect or linking him to drug trafficking within or outside Nigeria.
”We wish to warn these purveyors of fake news of the dire consequences of flying such wicked and unfounded rumours. We invite security agencies to go after these elements of hate and divisiveness, in order to sanitize the noble journalism profession,” he said.
Mr Amaechi had kicked against the appointment of Mahmood Yakubu as chairman of INEC in the interview he granted journalists shortly after casting his ballot during the 18 March governorship and state Assembly elections.
The former minister, who voted at his polling unit in Ubima, Ward 8 Unit 14, in Ikwerre Local Government Area of the state, said Mr Yakubu should have been removed on the grounds that he was nominated by a member of Mr Tinubu’s camp.
The former minister had described the commission under Mr Yakubu as “completely useless,” according to Sahara Reporters.
Mr Nwauju who recalled the statement made by Mr Amaechi on the election day said the former minister spoke in the full glare of the world and his “words were clean and clear.”
“Any person who wants to accuse the president-elect is free to do so, but should not hide under the former minister to do so,” Mr Nwauju said.
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