Former Minister Babatunde Fashola Petitions Police Over Defamatory Social Media Posts.
Former Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has lodged a formal complaint with the Inspector General of Police (IGP) regarding what he has labeled as defamatory statements circulated on social media platforms. The issue revolves around a series of tweets by a Twitter user with the handle @JacksonUde, accusing Fashola and certain legal professionals affiliated with the All Progressives Congress (APC) of orchestrating a favorable judgment for the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT).
In his tweets, Ude alleged that Fashola, along with a team of lawyers, was drafting a predetermined judgment to be presented to the tribunal judges. These accusations gained traction on social media platforms and sparked intense discussions.
In response, Fashola’s legal representative, Olanrewaju Akinsola, submitted a petition to the IGP, expressing the former minister’s displeasure and concern over the allegations. The petition specifically targets @JacksonUde, as well as two other Twitter handles, @ReporteraNew and @yorubasheik, for propagating the claims.
Fashola contends that the allegations made against him are entirely baseless and have exceeded the boundaries of reasonable discourse. The former minister argues that these accusations amount to character assassination and have the potential to tarnish his professional reputation as a legal practitioner. Fashola’s legal team invokes the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, Etc.) Act 2015, particularly Section 24, to emphasize that such actions run afoul of the law.
The petition also underscores the potential implications of the allegations on the independence, impartiality, and integrity of the Nigerian judiciary, which is constitutionally safeguarded by Section 17 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.
It is noteworthy that Babatunde Fashola had previously come into public focus during the Lekki tollgate shooting incident. He had visited the scene during the aftermath and was criticized for potentially tampering with evidence. Allegations were made that his actions led to the destruction of crucial evidence pertaining to the incident.