A close aide to General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, Salman Yusuf, has urged Nigerians to beware of internet fraudsters using the name and picture of the former military president to send wrong signals all in the name of politics.
In his statement in Minna, the State capital, Yusuf said the former Nigerian leader cannot send messages since he does not operate any social media account.
“Our attention has been drawn to a plethora of fake social media accounts, especially Facebook, bearing General Babangida’s name and photos. We wish to state that IBB has never owned nor operated any social media account, and he does not intend to operate any now or in the near future,” the statement added.
“The surfeit of Facebook accounts bearing his photos and names are fake. The fake accounts are the creation of identity thieves and cyber fraudsters, local and international, who steal the identity of prominent people to defraud, misinform and commit heinous crimes against Nigerians and foreigners alike. General Babangida does not comment on national issues on social media.
“That is absolutely unnecessary because there are official channels available to him to communicate his stand on any national issue to the authorities. Besides, he has unfettered access to several credible mainstream media that he can talk to any time he feels strongly about any matter.
“We implore the general public, indeed, all Nigerians, to please ignore the warped imaginations and antics of cyber criminals who do not mean well for our great country.
“Babangida’s faith in Nigeria is unshakeable, and he is optimistic that as a people, we shall overcome our current national challenges if we do not grow weary and if we resolve to get our leadership question right.
“We urge Nigerians to get involved in the democratic process, conduct themselves peacefully, and exercise their constitutional rights by voting for candidates of their choice in the coming general elections.”