The statement made by the Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose on the abducted Chibok schoolgirls has been greeted with unsurprising backlash and criticism by some well positioned Nigerians.
Fayose had on Wednesday stated that the abduction of the schoolgirls was not true, but a political instrument to unseat the former President Goodluck Jonathan.
Fayose had declared vehemently that the abduction saga was a political strategy employed by some elements to vote out Dr Jonathan, even when the Boko Haram group had shown the video of the over 200 girls in captivity, an abduction that caused global outcry.
Reacting to Fayose’s comment on Thursday, a senator representing Osun-West senatorial district, Isiaka Adeleke, called on the governor to put himself in the shoes of the schoolgirls’ parents, adding that even former President Jonathan later admitted that the schoolgirls were kidnapped.
He said, “Fayose should not trivialise this touchy issue. The governor should use his time wisely and pray for the safe return of these girls.”
The Punch reports that another senator representing the Osun-East senatorial district, Babajide Omoworare, called on the country’s security agencies to invite Fayose to tell Nigerians where the kidnapped schoolchildren are.
He said, “Security agents must invite Fayose for us to know where the schoolgirls are. He is probably having classified information. However, if he is playing politics as usual, it is cruel to mock the girls’ parents and Nigerians who are daily in agony and hoping that someday, the girls would come back alive.
“The Buhari administration will do all it can to bring back the girls and end the mockery from people like Fayose.”
Similarly, a former member of the House of Representatives, Bamidele Faparusi, described Fayose’s claim as a threat to national security, adding that Fayose’s comment had insulted the sensibilities of the families of the missing girls.
Faparusi said, “Governor Fayose has given the whole country the lead that these girls were neither missing nor dead. All we need to do is to ask him to tell the whole country where they are being kept and nothing more.
“The world-renowned activist, Malala, came to Nigeria to visit Dr Goodluck Jonathan and begged that these children must be recovered. Even after the abduction, some of these girls escaped and were later reunited with their families when Jonathan was still in the saddle.
“Could it be inferred here that the former President who is also a member of Fayose’s party, had lied against his own administration?”
Faparusi called on the security agencies to invite the governor for questioning to shed more light on his claims.
On Thursday, a former Executive Secretary, Ayedire Local Government Council of Osun State, Gbenga Ogunkanmi, said Fayose had lost the sense of dignity and integrity.
He said, “It is shocking that a person occupying the exalted position of governor could open his mouth and gush out these insensible utterances. It shows how debased our political system is. It shows that something is wrong with how our political leaders emerge.”
In collaboration with what Ogunkanmi said, the state Publicity Secretary of the APC, Joe Igbokwe, said Fayose had subjected himself to public ridicule with his comments.
He said, “It pains me to no end that we are still providing a chance for world-class joker, Fayose, to continue to insult our intelligence. Fayose is an indictment on all of us, especially the educated people of Ekiti State.
“Fayose is a punishment to the people of Nigeria and Ekiti State. The people deserve the kind of government they get. Again, the relocation of Ekiti lawmakers to Oyo State is not unconnected with the house of fraud called Ekiti Government House. Nothing good can come out of Ekiti as long as Fayose is there. Out of nothing comes nothing. You cannot give what you do not have.”
Also, the Political Adviser to Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole Charles Idahosa took a swipe at Fayose, describing him as a “fraudster”.
According to him, Fayose was only biting more than he can chew, “knowing that his sins will soon catch up with him”.
“It’s just a pity that Nigerians tend to forget history fast. I am always shocked when people take Fayose seriously. This regular attack on Buhari is to prepare the ground because he knows he will go down.
“All his actions are to whip up public sentiments so that when his sins catch up with him, people will say that it’s because he is always attacking the government. Is he the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Publicity Secretary or spokesman?”