The Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the president, Femi Adesina, said on Thursday he has been receiving curses after he was falsely accused of moving against the #ENDSARS protests rocking the country.
In a lengthy article titled: “An Enemy of the People” which he shared on his social media account, the presidential aide insisted that he has never advised President Muhammadu Buhari to ignore the #ENDSARS protesters.
Adesina expressed his disappointment that he was never given a chance to respond to the claim.
He wrote: For well over one week, the polity has been suffused with what President Muhammadu Buhari describes as ‘genuine concerns and agitations by Nigerians about the excessive use of force and in some cases extra-judicial killings and wrongful conduct by men of the Nigeria Police Force.’
“And in that period of time too, I have had strident efforts being made to position me as an enemy of the people. There were very serious efforts by mean people, who are simply out to generate hatred and animus against other people, for no other reason than a luciferous and pernicious feeling of smug satisfaction.
“As a year two undergraduate at the then University of Ife in 1982, one of the texts recommended for us in English Literature class was ‘Enemy of the Public’ by the Norwegian writer, Henrik Ibsen. I remember traveling from Ile-Ife then to the popular Odusote Bookstores in Ibadan to procure the book, along with some other recommended texts.
“The term ‘Enemy of the People’ originated in Roman times as hostis publicus, which if translated directly means, ‘public enemy,’ someone acting against the larger group, indeed, against society.
“If you get appointed to serve in an elevated public position in Nigeria, and you automatically face some odium, nay opprobrium. He has joined those who have come to steal our money. He has come to earn fat salary. He is going to be taken care of from the public treasury, while we have to slave and toil before we earn a living. He will be talking to us from a high horse, haughty and huffing, while we look like grasshoppers before him.
“They never care what you were, and where you were coming from. Whether you came down several notches in your income in order to serve your country does not matter to them. Did you lobby for the job or not, it does not matter. The moment you get appointed into a government position, you are poised to become an enemy of the people.
“The first salvo came on Sunday from a suicide fake journalist who plies his trade with an online rag called Peoples Gazette. He published that President Muhammadu Buhari was to have approved the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) the previous Friday, but had been prevailed upon not to do so by his spokesman, Femi Adesina. That happens to be me, and the information was coming to me as a piece of virulent, hateful news.
“Again, the hatchet job masquerading as a news item added that I convinced the president not to ever surrender the sovereignty of government to ‘Twitter warriors,’ whatever that means.
“Further, it said because of my anti-people convictions, I had issued a statement against the #ENDSARS protesters, which had received wide condemnation from the general public.
“Several falsities stood out from the supposed news story. One, what the reporter claimed never happened. That I prevailed on President Buhari not to scrap SARS must have existed only in his fecund but diseased imagination. What truth did that information rest on? None. Was I or anybody else spoken with to authenticate the supposed information? Not at all. It clearly failed the test of objectivity, which every good news story must pass.
“But on Wednesday, a hidden hostile hand, son of perdition, took a video of an interview, edited it, and made it seem as if I was reacting to the extant EndSARS protests. All hell broke loose online, with people mouthing maledictions and curses against me. Well such things have ways of returning to the sender, so it didn’t bother me. A curse shall not alight without a cause, says that Book of Books.
“I am happy that Channels Television was professional enough to issue a prompt clarification. It published that what was being made to look like a fresh interview had been done well over two months earlier. Thanks.”