The Presidency has threatened to expose certain information regarding a meeting between the late Mallam Isa Funtua and the publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore if he doesn’t refrain from soiling the name of the late politician and strong ally of President Muhammadu Buhari.
According to the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the Department of State Services may resort to exposing a tape recording of the visit of the late Funtua and other newspaper publishers to Sowore when he was incarcerated in DSS custody following charges of treason against Nigeria.
Sowore had been visited in jail by the late Isa Funtua, Garba Shehu, the publisher of Vanguard, Sam Amuka-Pemu and the Publisher for Thisday Newspapers, Nduka Obaigbena.
Following the death of Mallam Isa Funtua on Tuesday, Sowore granted several interviews were he narrated how the late statesman in company of other people had visited and advised that he put aside his calls for revolution to hasten his release from DSS custody at the time.
Reacting to Sowore’s claim, Shehu Garba warned the Sahara Publisher to let the dead rest in peace.
According to the presidential spokesperson;
“Let’s get the facts straight on the meeting with Sowore in SSS detention. First, it is important to state that the meeting was not instructed by the government. Nobody sent anybody to go and negotiate Sowore’s freedom as he put it.
“The late Malam Isma’ila (Funtua), on his own called me to ask that I broker a meeting with him and two others with the SSS, which they agreed to. It is important that I state that it was the force of Malam Isma’ila’s argument that made the meeting possible.
“Vanguard Newspapers publisher, Sam Amuka and ThisDay Publisher and President, Nigerian Press Organisation, Nduka Obaigbena, all agreed that Sowore was a ‘rascal’, who had used his newspaper ‘to abuse all of us,’ but agreed, nonetheless to go and press for his release.
“The meeting ended well, and contrary to the posturing by Sowore, he said he was happy with a resolution proposed but that his lawyer, whoever that was, needed to come on board. The fence-mending process apparently collapsed after the meeting of the trio with the lawyer in Lagos.
“Knowing the way the secret service works, it should surprise no one if they keep a recording of that meeting. Faced with this posturing and the unfair attacks on the dead, we certainly will be forced to ask for the release of tapes, in case they are available for the public to judge.”