By Uche Amunike
The presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the February 25th General elections in Nigeria, Peter Obi has debunked the ongoing speculations about him paying a visit to President-elect, Bola Tinubu, as widely spread on social media.
Speaking, during an interview on Arise TV, Monday night, the former governor of Anambra State, made the assertion in order to clear the air, explaining that the pictures being virally circulated on social media platforms are part of the ploy by the opposition to derail his objective.
He maintained that he never at any point visited Bola Tinubu and was hell bent on sticking to the course of justice and also fully prepared to follow the case before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal to a logical conclusion.
Hear him: ‘I never visited him (Tinubu). I didn’t. These are some of the things I have been telling you. They have turned the whole thing upside down. So, what they (the opposition) do now is think about what they are going to do to cause issues and what they are going to do to label him (Obi) this or that.’
‘If it is not labelling him (Obi) tribal bigot, or religious bigot when he is not speaking, they will find his family and check whether he has a lovechild and all sorts of things, including misrepresented identity among others.’
‘I didn’t visit anybody,’ the Labour Party flag bearer, reiterated.
The viral photograph that hit social media platforms was posted by a Twitter user, @Revsesan1, Saturday, claiming that the LP presidential candidate paid a visit to Bola Tinubu to begin reconciliation talks. He tweeted: ‘The Labor Party Presidential candidate H.E Peter Obi visited the President-Elect Tinubu. The Reconciliation & Nation Building has started. Obidients accept the will of God & join us in building a better & greater Nigeria.’
The picture showed Peter Obi standing next to Bola Tinubu and flanked by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to the right, while the president-elect was flanked by Chief Executive Officer of the Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, to the left.
Some other Twitter users indicated, through their comments, that the picture was indeed, photoshopped. A further Keyword search, according to The Cable News reports, stated the original photograph was taken when Dangote and Femi Otedola visited the President-Elect in Abuja on March 3. It gave the verdict that the photograph was indeed photo shopped.
Obi also clarified the misconstrued issue of his ‘arrest’ in London, explaining that he was never arrested, but merely stopped for a routine immigration check.
His words: ‘I was stopped for a routine immigration check and all these lasted for a maximum of 20 minutes. I was treated with all due respect. I was never arrested nor detained,’ the former governor clarified.
He added, ‘I lived in the UK in the 90s from 1993 to 2005. From that time till now is a period of 30 years and I have never been questioned, arrested or detained in any country in the world’.
‘I have never been arrested or questioned in any manner. I have never committed any offence. So, what happened was a routine immigration check and that happened not less than 20 minutes and I was given all due respect by the authorities.’