28 Nov 2014

Kano State Government threatens to sue Presidency for fraud

The Kano State government has threatened to sue President Goodluck Jonathan’s spokesperson, Reuben Abati, and the Presidency for advanced fee fraud, 419, over the use of the state’s project photographs to promote President Goodluck Jonathan’s re-election bid.

Mr. Abati, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, had, in a 10-part series of tweets on Sunday, used photographs of the 10-storey Northwestern University and students of the Kano State Institute of Informatics to illustrate key projects he claimed the President Jonathan administration executed in the six North-West states of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara.

The 10-storey building in Mr. Abati’s illustration was a long-standing project of the Kano State government, which was only completed and made a campus by the state’s current governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso. The Kano Informatics Institute was also established in 2011, by the current governor.

Using the hashtags #DidYouKnow? #TransformationintheNorthWest #ForwardNigeria#UpJonathan #UpNigeria, Mr. Abati deployed images and graphics to illustrate what he called the president’s transformation of the North-West zone.

Mr. Abati’s tweets angered the Kano state government, which accused him of lying, deception and plagiarism and demanded the deletion of the tweet and a public apology.

The current Kano state governor, who is claiming credits for the brandished projects, is also a presidential aspirant and member of the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC.

The tweets also drew heavy public criticism against Mr. Abati and the presidency.

The presidential spokesperson has since deleted the tweet and replaced it with an infographic where the president’s achievements were illustrated with words scribbled in colourful speech bubbles.

Ahead of the February 15 general elections, Nigerian politicians with ambitions are desperate to brandish concrete achievements to convince the voting public they performed well in their current position, a prerequisite for public support.

Credit: Ogala Emmanuel/PremiumTimes

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