A group under the aegis of Initiative to Save Democracy (ISD) has described as baseless and unsubstantiated the allegation that Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was tribalistic by Second Republic lawmaker, Junaid Mohammed.
A statement by the group’s Publicity Secretary, Peter Oladele said based on evidence, Osinbajo was one of the most loved and balanced public office holders who has offered equal opportunities to everyone around him.
ISD recalled that only a few weeks ago, Senator Ali Ndume from Borno State declared that the, “Vice President was passionate about humanitarian crisis in Borno.”
The statement reads: “The highest-ranking officer in the Office of the Vice President is the deputy Chief of Staff who happens to be Ade Abdulrahman Ipaye, a Muslim. His Senior Special Assistant on Legal Matters is Dr. Bilkisu Saidu while the SSA/Director of Protocol) is Ambassador Abdullahi Gwary from Yobe state.
“Prof Osinbajo only recently organised the construction of a world-class school in Borno state (Maiduguri International School) through the North-East Children’s Trust Learning Centre, Maiduguri and this is before the former governor of the state, Kashim Shettima named a world-class school (The Yemi Osinbajo Primary School) after him because of his contribution to the state.
“Then there is little Aisha Ibrahim, a Boko Haram victim whom the Vice President met during a surprise visit to Maiduguri. According to her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ibrahim Goni Lawani, Prof. Osinbajo personally covered the costs of the operation including flying in a US- based Skin Surgeon, Prof Ferdinand Ofodile to conduct a corrective surgery.
“The question that people should ask Junaid Mohammed is simple, is Prof. Osinbajo from Borno state? Or are all the people from that state from his church? It is ludicrous that people are trying to tarnish the name of a good man.”
ISD insisted that “even the ordinary man on the street will laugh at the ridiculous allegations of tribalism because Prof Osinbajo is one of the few politicians in Nigeria that flows freely with everybody across the country.”
“The Vice President flows freely with market women and artisans across the country. He attends Muslim events and has never been drawn along this nonsensical allegation. He is an upright man and a leading light in this administration.
“They should allow the Vice President to focus on the task at hand which is supporting the President in governance and delivering the dividends of democracy to Nigerians who voted himself and President Muhammadu Buhari into office for a second term.”
The group enjoined Nigerians not to pay attention to elements who seek to divide the country along religious and ethnic lines, stressing that, they are up to no good.
“It is obvious that some people with little or clout are seeking relevance at all cost, they will say anything to achieve this including telling outright lies. Nigerians must be wary of such elements,” it added.