News / Africa

Babangida Campaign Chief Accuses Nigerian President's Supporters of Threats

Multimedia

Audio
James Butty

A Nigerian media tycoon has said he stands by his allegation that supporters of President Goodluck Jonathan have threatened to kidnap his eldest son.

Raymond Dokpesi, who is director general of the presidential campaign for former Nigerian military leader Ibrahim Babangida, said he received several phone calls also threatening to attack his business if he did not step down from his post.

He said the alleged threats also involve the militant group Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, known as MEND.

Niger Delta Militants
Niger Delta Militants

“On [last] Tuesday, a group of leaders from the South-South who are frontline campaigners from President Goodluck Jonathan met and decided to expel me from a body which I am not a member of, which calls, or styles, itself as a South-South Leaders and Elders Forum. Less than 24 hours after that, MEND [Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta] decided to issue a claim declaring me persona non grata in the zone from which I come,” he said.

Dokpesi said, soon after the MEND statement, which he said included a threat, he began to receive telephone calls threatening his family.

“Now, after that [the MEND threat] came in, the members of my family, including my children, received various telephone calls threatening that my eldest son, Raymond Dokpesi, Jr. would be kidnapped on Monday if, by mid-day, I do not step down,” he said.

He said he was certain that some elements of the militant group were supporters of President Jonathan.

“I am stating unequivocally that some elements in MEND, or MEND by their release, have clearly shown that they are supporters of Jonathan,” Dokpesi said.

Dokpesi said he has alerted Nigerian police about the threat to kidnap his eldest son.

“I have reported it to the police; I’ve reported it to everybody. I’ve intensified my own personal security, and I pray that it does not happen,” he said.

Efforts to reach President Jonathan’s office on the allegations failed. But, a U.S.-based Nigerian Internet publication quotes a statement from the president’s spokesman, Ima Niboro, as denying the allegations.

He dismissed suggestions by some that he should stay out of politics as a media tycoon. On the contrary, Dokpesi said he has been a politician for most of his life.

“I have been a politician all my life. I sought to be president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I also had run for the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. So, my antecedent as a politician has never been doubt. But, I should also add that I have stepped aside as chairman of the media group,” he said.

Dokpesi said he has written a letter to the National Broadcasting Commission notifying them of his temporary withdrawal as chairman.

Voters queue to cast their vote during the governorship election at Ekulobia district in Anambra State, Nigeria, 06 Feb 2010
Voters queue to cast their vote during the governorship election at Ekulobia district in Anambra State, Nigeria, 06 Feb 2010

President Jonathan has not formally said that he would stand as a candidate in next year’s election, although he has  told southern governors that he would.

Dokpesi said he had made it clear that it would be a bad idea if Mr. Jonathan were to stand as a candidate.

“Let me say that I had personally written and have met with President Jonathan on several occasions to tell him, and to state emphatically, that it may constitutionally right, but it is morally wrong, and it is against the constitution of the party, which he belongs to,” Dokpesi said.

He said, if Jonathan runs, it would violate the zoning understanding between the northern and southern members of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs