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Barely few hours after the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, addressed a televised media chat in Port Harcourt, his media aide, Kelvin Ebiri, has denied reports that the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, offered his principal senatorial ticket when they met in London, last month.
Some media outfits had reported that the governor said this during the media chat on Friday.
But Ebiri, the Special Assistant on Media to the Governor in a statement on Saturday said not only was the report untrue but also misleading.
He, however, agreed that Governor Wike did said he was asked to go pick ticket for the red chamber of the national assembly, which he declined, pointing out that he neither mentioned Tinubu nor anyone else.
The statement reads, “Our attention has been drawn to a misleading report in some national dailies and online newspapers, particularly, Sahara Reporters that the All Progressives Congress Presidential Candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, offered the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, senatorial ticket to defect to the APC.
“Governor Wike was alleged to have disclosed this during the media chat that was aired on Channels Television, African Independent Television, Nigerian Television Authority and TVC on Friday, September 23, 2022.
“We wish to state emphatically that this news is false, baseless and ludicrous as the Rivers State governor throughout the media chat never mentioned the name of the APC presidential candidate or alluded to him offering him a senatorial ticket.
“To lay the facts bare, we have decided to include herein the transcript of what governor Wike said concerning senatorial form.
“First of all, this is how you know those who are prepared to run an election. Some of them collected presidential form at the same time collected senatorial form.
“You’ll know that those people are not serious to run.
“I never collected senatorial form. Even after the whole thing, people said come and go for Senate, I said no. I won’t do that. I’ve already made a commitment that this Senate ticket should be zoned to this area (Etche) because they’ve never had it before. I must not be in power.”
Continuing, Ebiri said, “In an era of increasingly divisive political climate, the tendency to pervert the truth is extremely high.
“It is on this basis that we wish to remind journalists that journalism’s first obligation is to the truth.
“At this critical juncture in our nation, we wish to remind journalists that getting the facts right is the cardinal principle of journalism. Journalists are enjoined to always strive for accuracy and give all the relevant facts in their report.
“We, therefore, urge the unsuspecting public not to give any credence to these false, baseless and ill-motivated reports.”