VERDICT: False and Misleading
CLAIM: CDD spotted a message trending on WhatsApp and other online platforms following a YouTube video posted by King Frank Records, with claims that the United State Government and Diplomats have given the Supreme Court, an Ultimatum to Reverse Imo Judgement; failure to reverse, all Supreme Court Justices and their families will be banned from entering the United States and it’s ally countries; in addition to freezing their assets.
The message which has gone viral since February 4th also claim ‘’ The US Government is threatening to invoke United Nation’s Laws and conduct a referendum to declare Biafra if the Supreme Court of Nigeria does not reverse its judgement. Referring to the Imo Governorship Election Tribunal Judgement which sacked, Emeka Ihedioha as Governor of Imo State.
The peddlers of the message urged receivers to follow a YouTube link to watch the full video which contains a News Conference done at the National Press Club in Washington DC in the United States.
FACT: Background checks conducted by our Fact Checkers revealed that the News Conference was held at the National Press Club, a meeting place in Washington DC for newsmakers, journalists and communications experts. A review of the Press Club’s website shows it listed the event, which held on Feb 5, 2020, at 12:00 pm (Washington Time) and was convened by the US/Nigeria Council for Food Security, Trade, and Investment. The Club, however, included a disclaimer on the event info ‘’This event is not sponsored or endorsed by The National Press Club. Inquiries should be directed to the contact above. ’’. Contacts provided were Mr Zoobee Chukwurah, (240) 308-5097; Bar. Lloyd Ukwu, +234-802-0317-4444.
Fact checks show the US/Nigeria Council is a network and meeting place for high-level industry leaders for engagements in the Nigerian economy. Speakers at the News Conference where the video was obtained were Bruce Fein, Esquire, Constitutional Lawyer and Former Assoc. Deputy U.S. Attorney General; W. Bruce DelValle, Esquire, Constitutional Litigator and Nigerian Legal Expert and others.
The news conference was to express the position of the group (US Nigeria Council) who had interests in Nigeria and not in any way associated with the US Government or its statutory Diplomatic organs. The US Nigeria Council is a business advocacy group made up of Nigerian and US Business elites and does not speak on behalf of the US Government.
The claim that the United States Government and Diplomats have given the Supreme Court of Nigeria, an ultimatum to reverse its judgement on the Imo State Election Petition Tribunal is false and misleading. While it is true that the event held at the National Press Club, the event was not organized by the Press Club, nor is there an association between the National Press Club and the US/Nigeria Council. CDD urge members of the public to disregard the misleading information and ensure they verify all information before sharing. Let’s join hands to #StopFakeNews.