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Journalist & Activist, Richard Akinnola punches UK’s Daily Mail over Buhari story

Journalist & Activist, Richard Akinnola punches UK’s Daily Mail over Buhari story

Journalist, Law historian and activist is really angry at the British tabloid Daily Mail for a salacious story about President Muhammadu Buhari which has gained traction among the anti-Buhari ranks.

According to him “After the ignoble story in the London Telegraph against the president few weeks ago, l thought l had seen the worst of the British press unprofessional conduct, until l read this morning, the London Mail online.

Apparently sponsored ahead of the president’s London visit on tuesday, first, the headline was mischievously at variance with the body of the story. The headline says -250 million pounds given to Nigerian president. A casual reader would think the British government gave the president some money, instead of to Nigerian government.

Displaying a very shallow sense of journalism , none of the assertions in the report were products of their investigative works but rather on what some people said. It claimed that Buhari declared an equivalent of one million pounds in his bank account in his assets declaration . This is patently false. How did N30million declared become £1 million? A simple online Google check on the president’s asset declaration would have assisted. But because this was obviously an hatchet job, the newspaper never bothered to do an independent investigation. It also claimed that a Nigerian newspaper published that the president’s daughter attends a £26,000 per annum school in the UK.

I had thought the the Mail online is in UK, it would have been easier to investigate this claim, instead of quoting an anonymous newspaper. I went through the report twice and l shook my head, wondering how the British press has degenerated. I thought they always claim that the third world press is corrupt but l have seen more corrupt press in the UK.

My position has nothing to do with Mr president but the cardinal rules of journalism. When the London Economist described former president Jonathan an “ineffectual buffoon”, l kicked against it. In journalism, the cardinal rule is that FACTS ARE SACRED but COMMENTS ARE FREE.

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