The media aide to Peter Obi, the Labour Party presidential candidate, Valentin Obienyem, has refuted claims that his principal hates individuals of northern Nigerian descent and is a religious bigot.
He noted this in a statement on Thursday, stressing that some faceless groups sponsored by political opponents are responsible for spreading falsehood about Obi due to his growing popularity.
The remark was made in response to earlier reports that Obi failed to act effectively when some northerners were killed in Anambra in March 2006.
Obi’s media assistant, in his response, asserted that none of the charges was accurate. His principal never supported the killings or the culprits, he said, adding that the incident mentioned about the killing of some northerners happened before Obi became the governor of Anambra State.
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 changed 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 a complete falsehood. If Obi had 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 barman to attract more customers. The truth is that there were no barmen at all.
“The person 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 country’s problems 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 is a great gift to Nigeria, which if properly managed, would be able to feed the nation and for export.”