Former presidential aide, Reno Omokri has said the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, travelled to the United States of America without stress.
In a post on his verified Facebook page on Saturday, Omokri also denied claims that Atiku used the immunity enjoyed by Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State to travel to the US.
The PDP chieftain was reacting to a social media report that the former Vice President used Tambuwal’s immunity to travel abroad after using that of former Senate President, Bukola Saraki in 2018.
Omokri stated that Nigerian Governors do not enjoy immunity outside the country, adding that serving American Governors do not have immunity in the country.
He wrote: “Nigerian Governors have no immunity outside Nigeria. This is why a serving Governor Alamieyeseigha was arrested in London. Even serving American Governors do not have immunity in America, which is why a serving Governor of Illinois, Rod Blagojevich, and a serving New York Lt. Gov. Brian Benjamin, were arrested, charged, and in the case of Blagojevich, convicted.
“Even serving foreign heads of state, who break US and international law, can be arrested in the United States, which is why Manuel Noriega, a serving head of state of Panama, was arrested and tried in the US, where he served a prison sentence in Miami, Florida.
“So, how can you believe the lie that Waziri Atiku used Governor Tanbuwal’s immunity to travel to the United States?
“And the source of this lie, who is a known proxy of former Governor Peter Obi, based that immunity on the diplomatic passport held by Governor Tanbuwal? A cursory research would reveal that any former Vice President also holds a diplomatic passport in their own right.
“That being the case, why would Waziri Atiku Abubakar, a former Vice President of Nigeria, have to piggyback on Governor Aminu Tambuwal’s diplomatic passport? It does not even make common sense.”
Omokri said that the PDP presidential candidate did not travel to the US with governor Tambuwal, saying that both leaders arrived in the country on separate days.
He, however, advised supporters of the party and indeed all Nigerians to disregard the social media claim.
He added: “Moreover, an investigation by any journalist would reveal that Waziri Atiku Abubakar and Governor Tambuwal did not travel together. They arrived in the United States on separate dates, via separate airport terminals, and in separate airplanes.
“Additionally, even the fact of diplomatic immunity is not a defence in this particular instance (not that a defence is required, as both Waziri Atiku Abubakar and Governor Aminu Tanbuwal are persons of sterling character, who have broken no laws). By virtue of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, holders of diplomatic passports can be prosecuted and jailed for crimes committed outside the country they are accredited to.
“Finally, we have identified the source of this fake news and have passed on his details to US authorities. I will not say more than that at this time, as the matter is in their hands”.