The Governor of Nasarawa State, Abdullahi Sule, has agreed to work with former Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, to tackle fake news and misinformation in the state.

The governor, who spoke on Tuesday when Lai Mohammed, who is now the Managing Partner of Bruit Costaud, paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House, recounted how a fake report of N40 million stolen from his bedroom recently went viral.

Mohammed was in Nasarawa to introduce Bruit Costaud, also known as BC Advisory, to the governor, which he said could shape positive perceptions through effective communication strategies across print, online, digital media and counter fake news and hate speech.

Sule said that the story was published after he refused to pay those involved a certain amount of money they demanded in order to stop the publication.

The governor said he never had such amount of money in his bedroom and went further to say that those that pushed the publication have ‘village mentality”.

“You mention an area you’ve gone through a lot of challenges. Maybe you’ll know how to help us out of it. The area of fake news. Fake news is very common, especially here in Nasarawa State,” he said.

“I’m sure you’ve seen one about N40 million being stolen from the bed room of the Governor. I didn’t report any N40 million being stolen from not even in my house but from my bedroom?

“I didn’t report that. I didn’t know how that happened. I don’t have N40 million in my bedroom. N40 million, that’s two Ghana-must-go bags if you can remember, with the kind of currency that we have and that will be taken out of my bedroom?

“And my bedroom is not not a place you can’t actually go through the staircase so I hope somebody is confident enough to go and take such money out of the house. Now that’s the highest level of fake news. Unfortunately a lot of people seem to take that seriously unfortunately we’re living in a country where there are a lot of hungry people especially in the media as well when someone will tell you ‘I have this news about you I want to publish but if you pay me I’m not going to publish it.

“My media team was told before the publication that ‘we you pay us, we’re not going to publish it. How on earth am I going to pay anybody for publishing N40 million stolen out of my bedroom.

“So Lai Mohammed, luckily you’re one of the people that know me for years. You know me when I was the Managing director of African Petroleum in Lagos. You know me when I was Group managing director in Dangote.

“It is because before even becoming a governor I’ve not worked N40 million? I try to look around I don’t understand the essence of the whole thing. Or I’m not supposed to have N40 million?

“That mentality is so village mentality that someone would bring it out and so I said I’m not going to pay anybody. I’m glad they said N40 million. Had it been they said it was N30 billion given to governors. If they said it’s N30 billion people would say ‘yes that’s the money given to them (governors).

“But since they stood at N40 million I said let them go ahead and publish and that was how they published. That’s the nature of our country and you(Lai) are one person that has gone through that persecution all the time.

“So of course if you say you’ll help us to avoid that, it’s okay. We’ll be looking forward to how you can actually go through that.”

Alleged N40m theft in bedroom: Nasarawa gov invites Lai Mohammed to fight fake news

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