- The presidency says it did not blackmail former president Goodluck Jonathan ahead of the Bayelsa governorship election
- Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, described the media reports as nonsense
- The presidential aide noted that there were more than enough reasons for the former president to work against his party
The presidency has described as “false and irresponsible’’ reports that former President Goodluck Jonathan was blackmailed to support the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the just concluded Bayelsa state governorship elections.
Speaking to journalists in Abuja on Tuesday, November 25, presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, expressed shock that such a story could be considered believable.
“Our media really must learn to verify whatever they publish. And people who make wild allegations during interviews should be made to produce the facts backing their claims by editors.
“A newspaper can be sued for granting space to people who belch false allegations against individuals with no proof,’’ Shehu said.
The presidential aide said Jonathan had been out of power for almost five years, without any previous allegations of government blackmail cropping up.
He also noted that there were more than enough reasons for the former president to work against his party, Peoples Democratic Party, in the just-concluded elections, without interference by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Anyone who has been following the politics of Bayelsa state should be aware of the sour relationship between Dr Jonathan and the incumbent governor, Seriake Dickson.
“That's more than enough reason for the former president to decide to work against his party if indeed he did.
“We really must stop this habit of blaming President Buhari for everything, including issues that are not his business,’’ he added.
Meanwhile, the deputy national publicity secretary of the APC, Mr Yekini Nabena has berated Governor Seriake Dickson for claiming that security agencies helped the party win the Bayelsa governorship election.
Nabena who dismissed the claims by the governor urged Nigerians to disregard the claim and not take Governor Dickson's statement seriously.
According to him, the election was free and fair and it was obvious that the people of Bayelsa state chose to embrace change.
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