Former aviation minister Femi Fani Kayode shocked Nigerians on Tuesday with a post on his Facebook page.
The opening paragraph of the post reads thus, “Anyone that honestly believed that a man who secretly shares the same vision and core principles of Boko Haram and who spent many years defending them can do anything but give them a free hand when he comes to power is living in cuckoo land”.
If Fani-Kayode has anyone around him who tells him the truth this is what they should tell him: “It’s not what you said or did not say that matters, it’s what a reasonable person would imply from what you have said.”
The Premium Times came up with a caption that expertly summarized his Facebook post, “After rejecting Jonathan, Nigerians deserve Boko Haram bombings – Fani-Kayode”
Hours after the Premium Times report, a press statement was released by one Jude Ndukwe, Special Assistant to Femi Fani-Kayode denying that his boss ever said Nigerians deserve Boko Haram.
First paragraph of his statement, reads thus: “It has been brought to our attention that Premium Times, a popular Nigerian online magazine, has alleged that Chief Femi Fani-Kayode wrote the following words on his Facebook page- ”For rejecting Jonathan, Nigerians deserve Boko Haram”.
This is false and, needless to say, Chief Fani-Kayode has never and would never say such a thing or harbor such a horrendous and heartless view”.
I thought the Facebook post was the lowest Fani-Kayode could go but in less than twenty four hours he has outdone himself by denying the real meaning of his post.
The statement is just a desperate attempt to salvage a situation that has backfired on him.
Fani-Kayode in the statement denied mentioning Goodluck Jonathan’s name or using the expression “deserve Boko Haram”. Seriously????
“They should point out where President Jonathan’s name was mentioned and they should also point out where he wrote that ”Nigerians deserve Boko Haram”.
He did not need to have mentioned Jonathan’s name or used the expression “deserve Boko Haram”. The first paragraph of his Facebook post says it all.
He actually thought he was being clever by not mentioning names in that offensive first paragraph but anyone reading it would knows exactly who was being referred to. The person who, according to Fani-Kayode, “secretly shares the same vision and core principles of Boko Haram…” (quoting his exact words). He cannot turn around and say he didn’t mention names. Everyone knows who is being referred to, so it’s not a defence in a defamation suit. Unfortunately Fani-Kayode could be facing much more than a defamation suit. In the US, such a post could be considered contrary to the Patriots Act.
In the same vein, It’s an act of cowardice for Fani-Kayode to say he didn’t use the expression “Nigerians deserve Boko Haram” when the first paragraph clearly implies that Nigerians are experiencing the consequences of voting for someone who (again in Fani-Kayode’s own words) … “secretly shares the same vision and core principles of Boko Haram…” The expression “what’s the difference between Six and half a dozen” comes to mind.
If Fani-Kayode is beginning to regrets his Facebook post it’s not too late to apologise to Nigerians and those directly affected instead of issuing statements pointing out what he did not say.
It’s not what he did not say that’s the problem it’s what any reasonable person would imply from what he wrote on his Facebook post – that Nigerians have voted for a Boko Haram supporter.