The federal government on Monday said its case with US-based Cable News Network (CNN), in which it wrote a petition demanding an immediate and exhaustive investigation into its report on the Lekki Tollgate shooting, to determine its authenticity and conformity to basic standards of journalism is far from over.
Addressing a press conference in Lagos, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information said though CNN acknowledged receipt of the petition, it is yet to respond on steps to take to prevent future reoccurrence of fake news against Nigeria.
The Federal Government had insisted that the military men did not shoot at #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate, describing the alleged mass killings as a massacre without bodies.
The Minister also warned the International Criminal Court (ICC), Amnesty International and other foreign bodies to desist from threatening Nigeria’s Armed Forces, saying that as a sovereign state, Nigeria will not submit its sovereignty to any organisation.
“The federal government frowns at this unbridled attempt to demoralize our security men and women as they confront the onslaught from bandits and terrorists. Nigeria did not join the ICC so it can become a pawn on the court’s chessboard. It beggars belief to see that a nation that is fighting an existential war against bandits and terrorists is constantly being held down by an international body which it willingly joined.”
“Nigeria is a sovereign state and will not surrender its sovereignty to any organization. ICC, Amnesty International and their cohorts should desist from threatening our troops and putting the security of our country in jeopardy. Enough is enough.”
“It is sad that these organizations mostly rely on fake news and disinformation to reach their conclusions, as witnessed during the #EndSARS protest when CNN – an otherwise respected global news network – went to town with fake news of a massacre”.
“As it turned out, it was a massacre without bodies. As you are aware, we called CNN out and also petitioned the network. Though they acknowledged receipt of our petition, we have yet to hear from them on what actions they intend to take to prevent a recurrence of the fake news they peddled about Nigeria. I can assure you, gentlemen, that the matter is far from over.”
The minister also condemned those he called jaundiced analysts who are describing Nigeria as a failed state, saying those predicting the implosion of the country have also been put to shame.
“Despite the antics of those who have constituted themselves to another ‘fighting force’ against our country, we have indeed made tremendous progress in tackling bandits and the terrorists of Boko Haram.”
“Recently, some jaundiced analysts and their lapdogs have sought to portray Nigeria as a failing state, on the strength of its security challenges.”
“But these analysts are dead wrong. Nigeria is not and cannot be a failing or failed state. Of course, you would remember that for the past two decades or so, some pseudo-analysts have been predicting the country’s implosion.”