The Lagos State Government has debunked reports that the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, and some All Progressives Congress chieftains were beaten up by aggrieved political miscreants at a reconciliation meeting on Monday.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Lagos State Deputy Governor, Tunde Alao, spoke on this in a statement on Wednesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that a story with the Headline: “Lagos deputy governor, others beaten up in free for all fight at APC secretariat,” went viral in the last 24 hours on the social media.
Alao noted that the Office of the Deputy Governor wished to state in unequivocal terms for the attentions of millions of readers that the report was untrue, mischievous, fake and unfounded.
He added that the Office of the Deputy Governor was compelled to debunk the story due to the inaccuracies it conveyed as it was completely different and not a true reflection of what happened at the meeting.
The official said the state would not allow some quack bloggers and journalists with mischievous inclinations to bring the personality and name of Hamzat to disrepute.
He said: “Therefore, it is important to state that truly, a meeting was called by the party to discuss with all the party candidates, aspirants and party chairmen.
“The meeting which commenced earlier on that day was abruptly brought to a halt as suspected political miscreants who were supporters from one of the local government areas, took over the venue, shutting out other members from accessing the meeting room.
“The deputy governor got to the secretariat and promptly calmed frayed nerves while he had meeting with the aggrieved parties for over one hour; after which photographs were taken and everyone went about their businesses peacefully.
“The above narrative is exactly what happened at the secretariat on Monday,
so one wonders and we are indeed amazed where the writer got his/her own side of the misleading information that the deputy governor and others were ‘thoroughly beaten up.’”
Alao regretted that this was a sad example of awful journalism and abuse of the social media space, which all must endeavour to do away with from public discourse.
He added that the state could not have journalists cooking up stories without verifying and without credible basis.
According to him: “To us, this story succeeded in exposing the unprofessional and unethical quality of the writer.
“In this specific case, he/she goofed.”
He, therefore, advised those interested in professional reports to continue their good work and the crooked ones to stop their falsehood because it would come back to haunt them.