Ibrahim Idris, the inspector general of police, has allegedly ordered the arrest of Kassim Afegbua, the spokesperson to former military head of state of Nigeria, Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, IBB, for the statement he issued on behalf of the former president.
This was revealed to the Independent, by a source in the Buhari presidency.
Mr. Afegbua, had earlier on Sunday, February 4, 2018 issued a statement on behalf of General Babangida in which the former military ruler asking President Muhammadu Buhari not to seek re-election in 2019.
Buhari, in the explosive statement, also called on Nigerians to vote out the failed government of Buhari and usher in a new generation of leaders.
“I have been doing this job for about 14 years now. And I have never issued a statement on behalf of the former head of state and he gave a rebuttal. I got authorisation and commitment from him before I issued the statement. It has been in process,” Afegbua said on Channels TV on Sunday night.
Soon after the statement from IBB was released, a second statement, allegedly arranged by the military ruler’s son who is a Buhari supporter was released by PR Nigeria denying the statement issued by Afegbua.
But Afegbua said Babangida called him after the second statement went out.
“He has called me to say that the statement still stands,” he told Channels TV.
“Of course, you know IBB is for everyone. People want to love him more than he loves himself. People want to appreciate him more than he appreciates himself. People want to play the role of IBB.
“So when the statement was released, some of his friends saw it and they felt we were trying to put the former president on a collision course with the president. So, they went and did a statement to deny that.
“But I have since spoken to him; he called me and said, that statement stands. The kernel of that statement should inform public discourse and not necessarily people personalising it as if it were to be against the sitting president.
“So, the statement stands and I have since communicated to all the media houses that they should respect that statement as coming from IBB. It did not emanate from my head. We sat down, we discussed and articulated them.
“General Babangida wants a new side of leadership, from the younger generation of Nigerians who in his own views have the resourcefulness, the energy and capacity to manage governmental affairs.
“He is not personalizing his statement against the incumbent president. But he is saying, as a stakeholder and a concerned Nigerian, that he shares in the aspirations of the people.”
Babaginda had called on Buhari to vacate the scene for younger leaders to emerge in 2019. He also said the time for restructuring had come and argued in favour of state police.
He condemned violence by herdsmen and proffered solutions to the crisis.