Prince Nduka Obaigbena (CON), Chairman/Editor-in-Chief of THISDAY/ARISE NEWS Media Group, has responded to allegations levelled against him by the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council’s (PCC) Director of Media and Publicity, Mr. Bayo Onanuga, and its Director, Strategic Communication, Mr. Dele Alake.
Obaigbena challenged the APC to present their candidate for debate and town hall meetings in order for the electorate to interrogate his proposed policies and programs and make an informed choice on who should lead them in the 2023 election in a rebuttal titled “Lies Have Short Legs, They Do Not Run Far – The Fake News from Bayo Onanuga and Dele Alake.”
The statement acknowledged that numerous APC-PCC members had personally called to distance themselves from the use of blackmail, personal attacks, and bullying by Alake and Onanuga, but it also stated that “everyday the media calls on public officials and those who seek public office to account,” demonstrating that the APC candidate’s actions were not motivated by personal animus.
In response to the claim regarding ARISE Networks Limited (ANL) UK, he stated that his disqualification as a Director was still a matter of litigation in the UK Court of Appeals and he would not want to make any further comments on the subject.
“The Judgement made it clear that there was no evidence of any dishonesty against Obaigbena. Since those initial teething difficulties, other ARISE entities have traded out of the shortages and ARISE News Channel is now thriving in the UK, Europe, the USA, Middle East and 54 countries of Africa. We await the judgement of the Appellate Courts on ANL as to why and if we ought to have known that the FX shortages in Nigeria would not improve to continue trading,” Obaigbena in the statement said.
Regarding employee pay, he said that ARISE News Channel has a very strong track record of consistently paying employees’ salaries on time and as they become due.
In response to questions about the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) refund and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Obaigbena clarified that the anti-graft organization had invited him and executives from other national newspapers to explain payments made to NPAN while he was president.
He disclosed that executives from all other newspapers involved, including Bola Tinubu’s The Nation, were also asked to explain the payments they received at the time.
Contrary to what Bayo Onanuga and Dele Alake claimed, he emphasized that he was not being held because he had not signed a bail bond and that he had never been taken into custody by the EFCC or the police in connection with a criminal case.
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