Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Drainage & Water Resources Joe Igbokwe, on Wednesday, deceived Nigerians, claiming security operatives might have arrested the abductors of students of Greenfield University, Kaduna State.
Igbokwe shared two pictures containing a large cache of arms, about a dozen suspected criminals, and wads of N1,000 notes on his Facebook page.
The pictures attracted scores of shares within an hour.
But no sooner had he made the post than Nigerians flooded his page with the same pictures taken by security agencies when they arrested suspected kidnappers of one Alhaji Tuku Zubairu, a wealthy businessman from Sokoto State, in 2019.
About N10.1 million was reportedly recovered from the suspects.
The story was published on October 22, 2019.
However, Igbokwe refused to pull down the post two hours after many people had exposed and countered him.
A former spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos State, Igbokwe frequently uses his social media platforms to promote ideals of former Governor of Lagos State and National Leader of the APC Bola Tinubu, the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC.
Of late, he has been very critical of his South-East people, following arsons, killings, attacks on security formations and destruction of electoral institutions allegedly perpetrated by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its security arm, the Eastern Security Network.
Our reporter contacted Igbokwe to know the source of his pictures yesterday evening. He did not pick the calls put through to him around 5:25 pm.
Rather than call back or respond to a text message sent to him, he deleted the post at about 5:30 pm.
Our reporter could not identify any other prominent Nigerian who shared Igbokwe’s pictures when this report was being filed
At least 20 students were whisked away from Greenfield University by gunmen on April 20.
Five of the students were killed by their abductors, while others were released in batches.
Parents of 14 of the abductees claimed they paid N180 million to secure the release of their children from the abductors’ den.
President Buhari and Kaduna Governor Nasir el-Rufai commended the release of the students.
Kaduna state has faced the worst insecurity in Nigeria in recent times. In March, The ICIR reported how deaths from insecurity in the state were three times higher than those of North-East states in 2020.
Meanwhile, Kaduna State Government said it could not confirm the authenticity of the pictures published by Joe Igbokwe.
Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs in the state Samuel Aruwan said he had been inundated with calls and text messages over the pictures.
Aruwan said in a message he posted on his Facebook page, “I have been inundated with calls, messages and emails to confirm if the bandits responsible for the kidnapping of the Greenfield University’s students have been arrested.
“While it is our desire to see this happen by the grace of God, I cannot confirm the story making the rounds, and I have not received any information related to this from security agencies.”