By Nathan Nwakamma
Yenagoa, March 13, 2021 Mr Kola Oredipe , Director, New Media to the Governor of Bayelsa on Saturday described the activities of former General Manager of Radio Bayelsa, John Idumange as blackmail and not whistle blowing.
Idumange, who was formerly an aide on Research and Documentation and Social Media to former Gov Seriake Dickson was arrested by Police on Wednesday and charged to court on Thursday evening.
A Chief Magistrate’s Court in Yenagoa had granted the Police an order to detain Idumange for 30 days to allow Police to conclude investigations on the sedition charges filed against him.
In a statement made available to newsmen Oredipe describe an online media report with headline “Whistleblower remanded in jail for exposing N3bn fraud in Bayelsa as inaccurate and misleading.
The governor’s aide explained that there is no fraud anywhere in the management of the Agric loan and that Idumange, engaged in the blackmail and treacherous act to attract personal gain.
“The Central Bank of Nigeria officials have debunked the allegations raised by Idumange on the social media to the effect that no money was missing as the agricultural plan of the government is progressing well.
“Idumange, is well known to many Bayelsans as purveyor of fake news and a man deep in spreading falsehood on social media to gain political patronage.
“It is a known fact that this is the way Idumange gets political appointments over the years, but he has met the wrong person in the incumbent Gov. Douye Diri, who has clearly said he would not give political appointment to anyone out of blackmail.
“This government is not averse to constructive criticism and clearly open to good ideas for the betterment of the state.
“We are happy that majority of Bayelsa people have equally condemned the unwarranted allegations and name calling by Idumange.
“We equally want to place on record that John Idumange, was not arrested on the order of the state government, but through petitions by those he alleged to have diverted funds in series of his social media post and on radio,”Oredipe said.
It will be recalled that former governor Dickson had in a press statement dissociated himself from the attacks on Diri’s administration which he handed over to on Feb.14, 2020, and urged his political allies to close ranks to ensure the success of the administration.