“In 1993, Bola Ahmed Tinubu surrendered $460,000 to the US government after a Chicago court found the income came from heroin trafficking,” UberFacts shared with its 13.5 million global audience at midnight on Monday. The platform attached an article from Peoples Gazette that detailed Mr Tinubu’s criminal run-in with the foreign authorities.
The matter, which jumped up to the number one Twitter trend, has rankled Mr Tinubu’s team as high-ranking members of his campaign team — presumably deciding how to best respond and counter the post — have kept mum while the lower-level supporters are unleashing vitriol on UberFacts’s Twitter account in an effort to ridicule and discredit the platform.
The usual surrogates -Bayo Onanuga, Festus Keyamo, Femi Fani-Kayode, Dele Alake- who are quick to jump against the slightest criticism against their principal have all so far kept studied silence, likely strategising to counter UberFacts as they did when Chimamanda Adichie, celebrated Nigerian author, asked the U.S. president Joe Biden not to congratulate Mr Tinubu on his questionable election victory last week.
“@uberfacts is actually @uberlies,” tweeted @KemPatriot, an APC loyalist. “If you have ever relied on @UberFacts for facts, it’s time to unfollow them, they are a pay per post organisation, who post lies for th (sic) highest bidder.”
Another loyalist of president-elect alleged UberFacts was a propaganda platform, even though the full court documents had since been published by The Gazette.
“We know the mandators and propagandists that convulse on mendacious innuendoes. They are free to bring same as evidence to court. Make I take Uber go check inauguration venue again self, @AdeHardemola quipped. “Awa ti se orire lati ana.”
@Zdenowo claimed the platform published Mr Tinubu’s drug case to gain relevance online.
“They know their audience. They needed the attention of the headless mob to revive their already dead page. I didn’t even bother reading the story because I know their game plan. Yeye people,” they tweeted.
“Yeye people” means unserious people in the Yoruba language.
Despite the certified true copies of his money forfeiture already in the public domain, Mr Tinubu insists he has no criminal record when he registered his presidential ambition with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last year.
The president-elect, all through his campaign, avoided talks regarding his haunting criminal past and his supporters flay anyone or groups who bring up the matter.
“Nonsense. That is my reaction,” Mr Onanuga told The Gazette Monday afternoon. “They keep recycling this matter. Who is Uber! Who is Uber! Please don’t spoil my day,” he stressed as he dismissed the matter.