Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, chairman of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo’s elders’ forum, claims he has never termed Yoruba people “political rascals.”
Speaking at a ceremony commemorating the one-year anniversary of Anambra Governor Chukwuma Soludo, Iwuanyanwu said that “political rascals” were behind the ethnic profiling during the Lagos elections.
In response to the news, Afenifere, a Yoruba socio-political organization, urged the Ohanaeze to caution Iwuanyanwu not to offend the Yoruba race.
Iwuanyanwu claimed in a statement released on Monday that the words attributed to him were false.
“I want to make it abundantly clear that at no time did I make the statement credited to me by blackmail circulating on the social media that Yorubas are political rascals as this was fraudulently manipulated,” he said.
“I want to warn all perpetrators of this fake news that it is a criminal offense to circulate fake news against a peace-loving Nigerian. To avoid doubt, I am a senior citizen who has meritoriously served Nigeria.”
“What I did at the ceremony was to admonish Igbos who felt threatened by various attacks in Lagos that they have no cause to worry because there are no problems between Igbos and Yorubas.”
“I, therefore, told them to stay in Lagos and go about their normal businesses. I did however mention to them that the attackers are political rascals and their action does not reflect the good relationship between Yorubas and Igbos.”
“I don’t have any doubt in my mind that the peddlers of this fake news are part of the syndicates that brought misery and sadness to the Igbos resident in Lagos. I am appealing to the Yorubas to fish them out and know that they are portraying Yorubas in a bad light.”
Iwuanyanwu added that one of his daughters is married to a Yoruba man from Oyo state and they have been together for 20 years.