A Policy initiative group, The Global Economic Policy Initiative (GEPIn) has taken a swipe at Reno Omokri, a former media aide of ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, describing him as an embarrassment to the ex- President.
The group made this known via a statement by its President, Bernard Okri, accusing Omokri of issuing misleading statements on behalf of Jonathan.
In a bid to refute a claim by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo that Nigeria had about 112.7 million people living in extreme poverty as of 2010, Omokri described the vice-president as a liar.
But Okri said Omokri is just tarnishing the image of the former president.
“Mr. Omokri has a record for impersonation, identity theft and blackmail but who would have thought that he would do it to his former boss and former President of Nigeria,” he said.
“In an attempt to slander Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on the poverty figures that he quoted while addressing the Council of Foreign Relations in New York City he dented the reputation and goodwill of his former boss.”
Okri said Osinbajo was right when he said the poverty level in Nigeria as at 2010 was over 112 million, which was over 67 % of Nigeria’s population at the time.
He said Nigeria only became the poverty capital of the world because the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which had been in government impoverished Nigerians.
“In 2010, over 112.47 million Nigerians were living on less than a one dollar a day. The NBS data showed that 67% of Nigerians in 2010 were living in “absolute poverty” – this figure had risen from 54.7% in 2004,” he said.
“According to the report in 2010, 93.9% of respondents felt themselves to be poor compared to 75.5% six years earlier.
“This is a disgrace to President Goodluck Jonathan, he has made him the laughing stock of the world, I think he deserves better than to be dragged in the mud by Mr. Omokri. A simple Google search would have saved both of them this embarrassment.
“He (Omokri) has record of telling lies and he is a very fraudulent person. Nigerians still remember Wendell Simlin, the name Mr. Omokri stole in his bid to blackmail then former CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, accusing him of sponsoring Boko Haram but he was busted.
“He has a past and most us know that he relies heavily on this type of activity to survive, things have not been easy for him since the PDP left government.
“We should engage in constructive criticism if we really want Nigeria to succeed, persons like Mr. Omokri exude bad vibes, Nigerians should not believe anything he says.”