A campaign to smear the reputation of All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, which started about six weeks ago, is in full swing, his Media Office said yesterday.
In a statement signed by Sunday Akin Dare, the Tinubu Media Office (TMO) said it had learnt of “a concerted, wilful campaign tagged ‘destroy the reputation of Tinubu and his relationship with Buhari,’” which it has been monitoring for six weeks.
The statement said: “As part of this ugly plot to cultivate the worst of lies against the national leader of the APC, several blogs and online sites recruited to launch this smear campaign have manufactured stories to advance this sinister plan to taint the public mind with gross lies disguised as news reports and interviews.
“This campaign, now in full and desperate swing, involves a blatant violation of the minimal standards of journalism and social media ethics.
“Without conscience or any hint of a sense of morality, the lie in the most outlandish fashion by attributing statements to Tinubu which he never made.
“ They concoct interviews that were never given and assert positions that he would never hold or endorse. They go about putting words in his mouth, contending that he was in places that he never was, and reporting falsely his movements and meetings.
“They recently have trespassed another boundary of proper behavior by engaging in cloning letterhead of the Tinubu Media Office and issues their libelous statements under such letterhead. This filth is now being circulated in the social media in a malicious attempt to tie him to the Dasuki money. The writers of these lies wilfully seek to mislead, confuse and deceive the public.
“Such fallacious headlines such as: ‘Reasons Why I collected N9 million-Tinubu’ and ‘I will not return N9 million –Tinubu’. ‘I am afraid PDP will stop Buhari in 2009 – Tinubu,’ are being paraded.
“Try as hard as they can, the creators of these false tales and misleading headlines will fail miserably. Their stories cannot stand up to the slightest scrutiny. They are patently false and we condemn in the strongest terms those involved in this anti-Tinubu racket.
“While these fellows may think themselves cunning, they might have outwitted their very selves. In writing these stories, they have committed clear libel. In abusing the media office letterhead and name, their misrepresentations amount to forgery.
“They laugh now but walk on thin ice. Soon, that ice will break and they shall have nothing but the weight of their wrongdoing to blame for their predicament that will soon come.
“The individuals behind the plot are mostly scarred PDP elements made frightened by Buhari’s anti-corruption campaign. They direct these falsehoods at Tinubu in the futile mission of trying to drive a wedge between the President and Tinubu, to disrupt the progress being made against corruption and to destabilise the APC.
“But their PDP is already something by-gone, buried under the mass of its corruption and wrongdoing. They fight for a cause that has no cause. They are mercenaries of all the ills and defects that the people want excised from our body politic. Thus, we must do the people a public service.
“After identifying the bloggers and paid hatchet writers perpetrating these wrongs, the Tinubu Media Office is taking the step to alert the public to beware and be wary of hatchet writers, false prophets and paid bloggers.
“The Tinubu Media Office has the names and online sites recruited for this campaign and will not hesitate to make them known if they do not desist from their negative mission.”thenation.