Candidate of the All Progressives Congress in last Saturday’s Edo Governorship Election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has denied reports that he appealed to Governor Godwin Obaseki to return to APC after Obaseki’s victory in last Saturday’s election.
A video had emerged on Wednesday wherein Ize-Iyamu appealed to Obaseki, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party who won the Edo governorship election, to return to APC. Obaseki had defected from APC to PDP in the build up to the election following his disqualification by the APC election screening committee.
The trending video was later discovered to be an old clip recorded in June when Obaseki dumped APC for PDP.
Based on the video clip, media reports had erroneously claimed that Ize-Iyamu, who met behind closed doors with the national leadership of the party on Wednesday made the appeal in Abuja.
The Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu Campaign Organisation in a statement Thursday called on the traditional media to perform due diligence in reporting events arising from Edo State, as unprofessionalism would render them as tools for PDP.
The statement by the Director of Communication and Media of the Osagie Ize-Iyamu Campaign Organisation, Mr John Mayaki, noted that nothing of such happened, adding that “the media has once again lent itself to the fabrications of Governor Godwin Obaseki and the PDP, as they did throughout the election.”
“We warned several times that the media should beware of fabrications from Obaseki and the PDP camp, but they did not listen. That is why they have reported that the election was free and fair, and that is why they have said our candidate appealed to Obaseki to come back to APC. The video in reference is from three months ago, not after the election but doctored by Governor Obaseki media handlers to seek undue legitimacy,” he claimed.
“Pastor Ize-Iyamu was reported in the stories as speaking from Abuja, but it was the Benin reporters that covered the story. Were the reporters transported to Abuja? Do these media agencies actually believe the stories they carry? Obaseki and the PDP has a way of leaking false news to the media and the media has to be sensitive and professional in receiving these news,” he said.
Mayaki also said there was a fake twitter account purporting to belong to Pastor Ize-Iyamu, which had been disseminating false information.
He warned the media to avoid it like a plague and verify all their information before passing them on.
“I only wish the media had been more professional during the elections; they were not and what is done is done. They don’t know how violent and anti-democratic it was in several parts of Edo State, including Egor in Benin City, and so they reported that the elections were free and fair. At least, going forward, let them verify all news before passing it on. It is the basic ethic of the profession,” Mayaki said.