Peter Obi, not a hater of Northerners, says aide
The media aide to Peter Obi, the Labour Party presidential candidate, has denied reports that his principal is a religious bigot and a hater of people of northern Nigerian extraction.
Valentin Obienyem, in a statement on Thursday, said some faceless groups, sponsored by political opponents, are responsible for spreading falsehood about Obi due to his growing popularity.
The statement comes in reaction to earlier reports which claimed Obi didn’t respond appropriately to the killing of some northerners in Anambra back in March 2006.
The article also further alleged that Obi, who was Anambra governor from June 2007 to March 2014, requested the DSS to remove some Hausa traders near his house while also ejecting some northern traders from their space.
However, Obi’s media aide, in his response, said all the allegations are not true. He explained that the incident referenced about the killing of some northerners happened before Obi became the Anambra State Governor and his principal never encouraged the killings or the perpetrators.
Obienyem added that Obi believes in the unity of Nigeria and what each region can contribute to national development based on comparative advantage.
“Our attention was brought to the above campaign of calumny launched by some faceless groups,” Obienyem said.
“Is it by coincidence that it came when we were reliably informed that some political parties have charged their political office holders to hire people to relentlessly attack Obi with falsehoods on all available social media platforms?
“The false writer said that after the killing of northerners on the 21st and 22nd of March, 2006, before Peter Obi became the governor, his reaction came in the form of a statement, namely: ‘you people should tell your people to stop killing our people in the north’.
“This is complete falsehood. If Obi made that statement, it would have been lavishly published by the media. Would the author show us the link where the statement was published?
“The false writer said Obi requested the DSS to remove Hausa traders near his house. He wrote that the Hausa man was invited by an Igbo bar man to attract more customers. The truth is that there were no bar men at all.
“The person that was removed by the estate security on their own was a woman selling articles like biscuits because she also supplied drugs to bad boys. As I write, the suya seller is still there.
“Obi is desirous of becoming the President and he has been going around telling people the problems of the country and how he hopes to solve them. He expects other contestants to do the same rather than sponsoring falsehoods to pitch him against the people.
“During his tour of the north, Obi, for example, made it clear that expanse of land in the North for agricultural purposes are a great gift to Nigeria, which if properly managed, would be able to feed the nation and for export.”