Senator falsely accuses journalists of stealing his phone, orders them searched

Journalists who attended an event at the headquarters of the Kano Electricity Distribution Company [KEDCO] in Kano on Wednesday felt deeply embarrassed when the visiting Chairman of the Senate Committee on Power, Gbenga Obadara, raised a false alarm that his telephone set was missing and that reporters might have stolen it.

Once Mr. Obadara made the claim, officials of KEDCO quickly locked up the venue of the event and ordered that all journalists at the event should be thoroughly searched.

Police officers were asked to block the entrance to the hall to prevent any reporter from leaving even while officials of KEDCO and some officials who accompanied Senator Obadara to the event were allowed to go free without being searched.

At a point, more fully armed police officers were brought in to join in frisking the journalists.

At the height of the embarrassing situation, somebody knocked on the door of the hall and announced that the senator, who was now outside the hall, had recovered his phone.

The announcement angered the journalists and embarrassed the management of the company who apologised profusely to the reporters.

The company’s Principal Manager, Corporate Communications, Mutari Usman, said the journalists should overlook the incident and continue to see KEDCO as partners in progress.

The senator did not personally apologise to the journalists.

But the Chairman of the Kano Correspondents Chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edwin Olofu, rejected KEDCO’s apology and directed his members to commence an immediate boycott of the company’s activities.

He said journalists in Kano would not report the company’s activities for three months unless they receive a formal unreserved apology.

“This is very embarrassing! How can a Senator of the Federal Republic belittle himself by raising a devastating false alarm like this,” Mr. Olofu fumed. “It is a slap on our face.”


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  • Makeli K. Onokan

    Why are you embarrassed? You are just reaping the fringe benefits of BROWN ENVELOPES. Or what do you think played out in EKITI judiciary mayhem. You cannot eat DIRTY and not want to get DIRTY. I bet there is more to come. You aren’t seen nothing yet.

  • Senator Gbenga Obadara

    Am just hearing this for the first time. I left the board room with the MD to his office for the executive session of the oversight visit. My phone was with me throughout the visit. Though I was called when I was in the meeting and asked whether I was with my phone and answered affirmatively.

    I will check with the KEDCO tomorrow and my secretarial staff on this incident and get back to you. But in interim if this really happened am sorry for the embarrassment. I will not in anyway see to the humilation of anybody in my life.

    Thank you.

    • dudu

      Indeed. You can tell that to the marines, how would you not know that police officers were brought to frisk journalists over your missing phone; infact, the NUJ across the country should treat you as a leper except you go back and personally apologise to those poorly paid journalists simply because they came to do their job after being duly invited by the company to cover the event.

  • @Amuwospeaks

    What will journalist not see from this people. That one is a journalist doesn’t mean one can afford an expensive phones like theirs…

  • YES.JESUS.IS.GAY

    A journalist can write lies, interpret and fabricate stories, write the event the way he understand it even if indifference to realities of the event. Journalist steal a phone?? this is really new. the distance between the press and this “lying senator” must had prevented such an act.

  • Bature

    Lesson No 1: Journalist should stop cheapening themselves by accepting “brown envelopes” to satisfy their “stomach infrastructure” – the reason why politicians look down upon them as “hungry boys” and “potential thieves”! They also need to “name and shame” those of their colleagues who are in that habits. Until then, they will not be seen as the rightful “Fourth Estate”

    • Adoki

      Name and shame ke? Who would name who and shame whom? They say one bad apple spoils the bunch. How about a bunch of rotten apples? Even their editors are worse.

    • Atom Ant

      On point!

  • Adoki

    Steal phone or no steal phone, these journalists do worse things. They collect money to tell lies, cover up political immorality and ASSASINATE people’s character. It is worse than stealling my peoperty.
    They are angry about apology how many times have they apologised for destroying people’s reputation, sometimes forever, just for of a pot of poridge?
    The politicians know them that is why they hire them as their communication people, instead of professonal PR practitioners. They very good tools as lying machines.
    Sometimes I wonder if these journalists have a religion.

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  • tsunami1earthquake

    The journalists should sue the senator for slander. Period!

  • tsunami1earthquake

    Very distressing the type of responses we read from readers on this incident. At the least the responses were quite irrelevant. What has taking ‘brown envelopes’ got to do with false accusation of stealing? Phew! Nigerians; that’s why nothing moves in that country.

  • Ekwekwe

    Where is the news in one village Senator Gbenga Obadara visiting Kano Electricity Distribution Company? Why were the journalists there if they were really news people? I am tempted to say that as long as Nigerian reporters continue in their embarrassing hunt for brown envelopes, food and drink, they will continue to be humiliated. As for the threatened boycott of KEDCO affairs, it will be settled in the altar of brown envelope within hours.

  • Rommel

    What are they waiting for in seeking legal redress? why are Nigerians treated in such manner by those supposedly elected to serve them? that senator needs to be taught a very nasty lesson,what sort of bullcrap is that?

  • paul preston

    because he is in your camp apc you will not mention his party.The proper heading for this news is APC Senator detains journalist,Acuses them of stealing his Ipad