The Minister for Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has said he was speaking off the record following a video where he was seen saying the federal government spends a total sum of N3.5million monthly (which amounts to N160,000 daily) to feed the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) otherwise known as Shi’ites, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.
El-Zakzaky who has been in detention for over two years was again on Wednesday denied bail.
In the video, Mr Mohammed said, “The issue of whether, where he (Mr El-Zakzaky) is, at least let’s keep it off record, that he is in a residence and you know eating at the…
“It costs the government about N3.5 million every month to feed him,” Mr Mohammed said
“Honestly, don’t quote me, but these are the facts.”
Mohammed, had come under attack for his claim on Wednesday when the video went viral.
Among those that attacked Mohammed for the claim was Senator Ben Murray Bruce, who wrote on his Twitter handle:
”If President @MBuhari can afford ₦3.5 million per month to feed Ibrahim El Zakzaky, then I don’t see why he can’t find afford ₦30,000 per month to pay the new minimum wage. Or should Nigerian workers join Zakzaky in detention so they can feed at ₦116,000 a day too?”
Also, aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Reno Omokri, reacting on the claim also wrote on his Twitter handle, “₦3.5 million a month is ₦116,000 a day. Where did @MBuhari find this monumental LIAR from? They should change his title to Minister of misinformation and national Disorientation.”
Also captured in the video was the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, who interrupting Mohammed, and jokingly said, “then you people need to take me in o.”
With all seriousness Mohammed continued, “Honestly, don’t quote me, but these are the facts.”
Interrupting again Amaechi threw in another joke saying he “can take N500, 000” monthly to be held in prison by the government.
Explaining more on his claim, Minister Lai explained that he “asked” from relevant people to arrive at his information.
He then said, “So please. We don’t want to inflame passion. The issue is a very sensitive matter. But that is the situation. The Islamic Movement of Nigeria is a different kettle of fish.”
Bellow are more reactions on the claim on Twitter:
Philips Sunday @PurityPhils
Philips Sunday Retweeted Concise News Global
Lai Mohammed’s claim means Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky is eating “gold, diamond and silver spiced with lion, elephant and whale” to be able to consume a whopping N3.5m monthly.
Ada Monique @adaezemonique 2h2 hours ago
FG Spends N3.5m Monthly To Feed Ibrahim El- Zakzaky” – Lai Mohammed. That means El-Zakzaky eats N112,903 meal a day. The facial expression the Devil gives whenever Lai Mohammed opens his mouth to talk.
By Ebere Ndukwu …
Alhaji Lai Mohammed legit said “It cost government N3.5 million to feed El-Zakzaky every month”. Like seriously? pic.twitter.com/ual3i0LiLi
— Bhadmus Hakeem (@Bhadoosky) November 8, 2018
RipplesNigeria… without borders, without fears