Rivers rerun: Leaked audio recording renews Wike, APC war
An audio tape portraying Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike admitting to bribing some electoral officials and threatening to kill them if they failed to play ball went viral yesterday.
In the audio, published by Sahara Reporters, an online publication, a supposed electoral officer is heard informing the governor that officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) were being intimidated from doing his (the governor’s) bidding.
But Wike’s Information Commissioner Austin Tam-George dismissed the telephone conversation as fabrication.
Dr. Tam-George accused the on-line publication of acting the script of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC).
It said: “Intimidation by who now,” Mr. Wike was heard asking.
The governor told the official to tell others to be courageous and do what was done in Ikwerre
“Ikwerre did it, they couldn’t even do anything,” the voice said to be Wike was heard saying.
The governor is also heard threatening to kill the officials if they do not do his bidding or return his money.
“They should return what they gave them or I will kill them,” the governor was heard telling a supposed aide whom he asked to warn the unnamed INEC officials from deployed from Plateau.
The commissioner said the whole thing was an allegation, fabrication, and outright lie, noting that there was no time that the governor made any contact with INEC officials for the purpose of rigging the rerun elections.
Tam-George said that modern technology had made it possible for a person’s voice to be manipulated.
He said: “Governor Wike never made any contact with INEC officials in person or by telephone.
“No one would have thought that the APC and its cowardly media allies would resort to an audio impersonation of Governor Nyesom Wike, using a voice changer technology. The voice changer technology is often used by teenagers mainly in South Korea and Japan to launch innocent technology prank at each other, mainly for laughs.
“We reject the latest blackmail by the APC.”
Also reacting, the APC State Publicity Secretary, Chris Finebone said: “Having been caught in the web of their own machinations, what do you expect Governor Nyesom Wike and his Commissioner to say?
“Often when anyone is caught pants down, the most convenient and ready response is to blame and blackmail others. The truth remains that Gov. Wike in that audio tape was caught pants down and he simply cannot find where to hide.