Former Governor of Lagos State, and the national leader of the ruling party, All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has come out to address all allegations linking him with the gruesome act of some yet to be revealed soldiers who attacked peaceful EndSars protesters at the Lekki toll-gate area of Lagos State.
The embattled former governor, in a statement released on Sunday, insists that he was being falsely accused, as he did not order such operation, or had prior knowledge of it.
Tinubu, since the Lekki incident, has been at the centre of controversy over widespread beliefs and circulating opinions of his instigating the deployment of soldiers to the convergent area of the protesters at Lekki, an operation which was reported to have claimed the lives of some of the protesting youths as well as left several others hospitalized.
According to Asiwaju, “this allegation is a complete and terrible lie. I did not order this or any assault against anybody. I would never want such a vile thing to happen nor did I have any prior knowledge about this sad event.”
Speaking further, he said, It is my firm belief that no one should be harassed, injured or possibly killed for doing what they have the constitutional right to do in making their contribution to a better, more equitable society.”
In the midst of public reactions over the Lekki attack, there were buzzing speculations flying all over media spaces that the embattled politician was harassed by Nigerians living in France and his son kidnapped. Bola Tinubu denied these as he claimed he has been in Nigeria all along while his son is safe with him.
“As a political figure, I am accustomed to people attributing to me all manner of indiscretions of which I have no knowledge and in which I played no role. I have usually ignored such falsities as the cost of being in the public eye. This time, it is different. The allegation now levied against me is that I called on soldiers to kill my own people. This allegation is the foulest of lies.” Tinubu said in the statement.
Further referring to the statement, Tinubu attributed the disdain towards him to people’s belief in the many false rumours that had been uttered about him for years, while he feels his name is being maligned by people who he believes “hides ulterior motives and harbours unrequited scores they intend to settle”.
He said, “A week ago, such people tried to bring enmity between me and the state and federal governments by contending I was sponsoring the protests.” When that did not work, they then sought to sow enmity between me and the people by saying I ordered soldiers to quash the very same protests they first accused me of organising.”
He however challenged his opponents who oppose him politically to do so in the open and “employ facts and not fiction in their efforts towards him”.