The Nigeria Nobel Laureate Prof Wole Soyinka has reacted to the report of the Nigeria Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi leaked audio.
Soyinka while at the symposium on Fake news organized by BBC in Abuja on Wednesday said he did not hear any insult in the audio contrary to many reports on social media.
The audio which was released in batches was released by the Spokesperson for the Atiku Abubakar campaign, Phrank Shaibu and further shared on Twitter by Reno Omokri a former aide to ex-president Goodluck Jonathan.
Atiku Abuabar is the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, the main opposition challenging Mr President’s in the next month Presidential election.
Amaechi lamentation painted Buhari’s administration as a total failure, disclosing that the President has not been able to meet the people expectations.
He said Nigeria is actually worse off under his Principal. He said the only way Nigeria will change is if everyone was shot.
“The president does not listen to anybody. He doesn’t care. You can write what you want to write. The president doesn’t care. Does he read? He will read, he will laugh. He will say ‘come, come and see, they are abusing me here’.
“In fact, there was one case of somebody in Onitsha, a trader in Onitsha who couldn’t sell his goats during Sallah. And I was with Oga on the plane and the man was busy abusing Buhari. He said, ‘Amaechi, come, what is my business with Onitsha goat seller?”
“These are not things you publish, if you publish it you will never sit with me. Three years of Buhari everybody is dying, crying. Pressmen are crying, farmers are crying, workers are crying, politicians are crying, students are crying.
“Only three years o. The rate of poverty is very high. Nigeria will never change, nothing will ever change. The only way things can change is when everyone is killed, this country is going nowhere, you know, I am not joking o”
Reacting, Soyinka, who was a panellist at the event tagged, ‘Nigeria 2019: Countering Fake News’, warned the print media to stop fighting to measure with the online media, adding that there was a great expectations from the traditional media.
He admonished that the print media spread unfounded allegations while trying to imitate the new media.
He said, “Just two or three days ago, I read an item where a minister was supposed to have insulted the President and it was carried in some media and I checked the statement and of course there was a video and so on and I looked through it, I read the text again and again and I said I have to relearn the English language because I didn’t see where the insults were.
“So sometimes, print media feels compelled to compete with the electronic media and this is a great mistake because there is a reputation, there is an expectation and you should not be embarrassed to show yourself superior to a medium which is accessible to the lowest, the very dregs of society.”
The audio attracted a lot of buzz from Nigerians, home and abroad and members of the main opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party.
The Presidency had reacted on Tuesday, assuring that the leaked audio could not harm the All Progressives Congress ahead of the 2019 general election.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed said the aduio was maliciously edited out of context, assuring that it won’t break any ranks in the party.
Mohammed said, “The opposition is determined to ensure the ongoing campaign for the 2019 elections is not based on issues but on mudslinging.
“What is the point in shopping around for audio clips or publications that are then maliciously edited out of context? Why do they think this will break our ranks in the ruling party?
“What advantage do they think they can get from this infantile act? Whoever wants to circulate any audio or video clip should do so in its entirety so the people can understand the context. Otherwise, let them continue wasting their time circulating an audio that is clearly designed to blackmail.”