Plagiarism scandal: Buhari threatens to ‘wield the punitive rod’ on those who inserted Obama’s ‘victory’ speech into his ‘change’ speech.
The Presidency has admitted that the speech read by President Muhammadu Buhari on September 8, the day he launched the ‘Change Begins With Me’ campaign, contained insertions plagiarism, as it has a sentence lifted from a speech made by the United States’ President, Barack Obama, in 2008.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, revealed that an investigation had been launched into the matter and that officials so far identified to have committed the blunder would be punished.
According to him, it was observed that the similarities between a paragraph in President Obama’s 2008 Victory Speech and what President Buhari read in paragraph nine of the sixteen-paragraph address while inaugurating the Campaign on Thursday, September 8, 2016 are too close to be passed as coincidence.
Read statement below.
President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered that prompt and appropriate disciplinary action be taken against those responsible for a wrongful insertion in his speech delivered on September 8, 2016 at the launch of the “Change Begins with Me’’ campaign.
It was observed that the similarities between a paragraph in President Obama’s 2008 Victory Speech and what President Buhari read in paragraph nine of the sixteen-paragraph address while inaugurating the Campaign on Thursday, September 8, 2016 are too close to be passed as coincidence.
There was a mistake by an overzealous staff and we regret that this has happened.
Already, a Deputy Director in the Presidency has accepted responsibility for the insertion of the contentious paragraph.
This serious oversight will be investigated thoroughly and appropriate sanction meted.
The Presidency wishes to state in the clearest possible terms that it regrets this unfortunate incident and will ensure that this does not happen again.
President Buhari urges Nigerians to look beyond this incident and focus on the message of change which the country needs in order to restore our cherished value systems.
SSA to the President
(Media & Publicity)
September 16, 2016