The APC presidential campaign council has accused Peter Obi, the candidate of the Labour Party, of pursuing an ethnic agenda over a controversial and uncorroborated WhatsApp BC amplified by the former Anambra governor in which Tinubu’s supporters, particularly members of the Yoruba ethnic group, were accused of basing their support on fear of Igbo resurgence, which Obi purportedly seeks to augur.
A statement by Festus Keyamo, the spokesperson of the APC campaign, alleged that Obi concocted the said message in a bid to exploit the country’s ethnic faultlines and distract from his highfalutin messages, bereft of ideas, depth and clear-cut solutions.
He also denied reports that APC candidate Bola Tinubu was stepping down due to health reasons, blaming the misinformation on Obi supporters who had previously been caught in multiple fake news scandal, including a debunked claim that Peter Obi helped secure clemency for Nigerians on death row in East Asia.
Keyamo said: “Our attention has been drawn to an offensive, hate-filled video made and circulated by the Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi, in which he accused an amorphous and non-existent “Tinubu’s Group” of spreading a Whatsapp message calling on the Yoruba not to vote for him. The purported message, according to Mr. Obi, forewarned the Yoruba that a vote for Peter Obi would be a vote for a seaport in South/South and South/East.”
“Firstly, we vehemently deny the existence of any of such “Tinubu group” that made and circulated such a message. All groups supporting the APC Presidential Candidate and his running-mate have clear designations with well-known promoters. In addition, it is only messages released by the APC Presidential Campaign Council that are officially authorized and for which we take responsibility.”
“We challenge Mr. Peter Obi to reveal the source and name(s) behind that nebulous Whatsapp message.”
“We wish to state that it is obvious Mr. Peter Obi deliberately concocted that message and circulated that offensive video himself as a campaign strategy in order to come across as a victim of some kind of ethnic agenda, whereas in truth, he is the real agent provocateur of an ethnic agenda.”
“As the takeoff date for campaigns draw closer, Mr. Peter Obi has suddenly realised that Nigerians are beginning to burst his bubbles as his messages are bereft of ideas, depth and clear-cut solutions to our challenges. His messages are only full of false data and highfalutin jargons in what is clearly a disingenuous ruse to distract a scrutiny of his empty records as a Governor of Anambra State and nothing else. Hence his easy recourse to playing ethnic card and fanning the ember of hate.”
“We have in on good authority that part of the “US Strategy” (just like the failed “Dubai Strategy” his former boss and himself adopted in 2019) was to return to the country and spread ethnic hatred amongst the voters and cause chaos, then pose as the victim. They have just kick-started that plot by orchestrating and circulating the said video.”
“We find it utterly disgusting, demeaning and insulting to the sensitivities and sensibilities of Nigerians for a Presidential Candidate of the ilk of Peter Obi to make such a video parroting a spurious, unverified and sham message that has the potential of deepening our faultlines as a nation and further promoting ethnic tensions. This is completely unbecoming of a Presidential Candidate that hopes to unite this country. Again, we note that Mr. OBJ’s latest stunt is consistent with what is now widely perceived as his adoption of hate as campaign strategy, having consistently failed to rein in his known and identifiable supporters, mostly domiciled on social media, threatening political opponents with violence and death.”