A group called the Osinbajo for President Media Council says it has uncovered a plan by some people to smear the image of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo by saying he is a religious bigot who discriminated against Muslims when he was the Attorney General of Lagos State.
The council, in a statement today in Abuja, alleged that the plot had been traced to a United States-based Nigerian and a former Students Union President at the University of Lagos.
It said the plan was to use fake audio of faceless individuals with fictitious names to cast the vice president, who is a Christian, as a religious fanatic who discriminated against members of staff of other faiths.
The council stated that in the fake video, a woman is seen crying and making frantic allegations that she was discriminated against by the then Attorney-General because she was not allowed to wear the hijab to work.
“As observed by someone who was in the same ministry at the time Osinbajo served as Attorney-General, no such incident ever occurred and this is just a malicious and wicked attempt to sully the sterling qualities of Prof. Osinbajo because of his presidential aspirations,” the council said.
It added that Osinbajo’s Secretary as Attorney General and a Muslim, Alhaji Abdul Gafar Bakare, had testified before now that the then Lagos AGF “did not only encourage me to further my education even at my relatively old age, he personally sponsored my BSc Accounting Programme.”
The council also quoted Bakare as revealing that Osinbajo sponsored his foreign travel then.
The group said that similar smear campaigns were unleashed against President Muhammadu Buhari, especially during the 2014-15 presidential campaigns, when it was alleged that he was anti-Christian.
“Even though a Christian, Pastor, Prof Osinbajo has always demonstrated himself to be a tolerant Nigerian who believes in the inter-faith harmony and freedom of worship as enshrined in the Nigerian 1989 Constitution as amended.
“During his career as a university teacher, he taught Moslems and Christians alike in a convivial atmosphere.
” He also had excellent working and private relationships with Muslim bosses over the decades, including Judge, Bola Ajibola, former governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and President Buhari.
“He remains a firm believer in Nigeria’s diversity and ardent proponent of Nigerian unity.
“For these reasons, the Media Council feels the need to alert the general public to the odious campaign strategy of Osinbajo detractors and urge everyone to ignore them when released to the public,” it said.