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EX- Minister Fani Kayode apologies to reporter for calling him stupid

By Maria Ifafesobi
The former Minister of Aviation, Mr. Femi Fani-Kayode, has apologized for calling a Daily Trust reporter, Mr. Eyo Charles, “stupid” after being asked who bankrolled his recent tour to several southern states in the country.
Mr. Fani-Kayode made this apology known in a statement on Wednesday after several individuals and groups had called him out for calling the reporter ‘stupid’ in a video that went viral, during a press conference in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.
In his statement, he said, “I met with my advisors till late last night and I wish to say the following. I hereby withdraw the word ‘stupid’ which I used in my encounter with a journalist in Calabar. I have many friends in the media who I offended by losing my cool and using such words. I hereby express my regrets for doing so.”
He, however, denied all allegations that he had threatened to harm the reporter.
“I do, however, wish to state categorically that no threat of physical harm was ever made to the journalist in question and neither did I send anyone to threaten him. Anyone that says otherwise is lying and I challenge them to bring the proof.
“I would never seek to physically harm a journalist. For the last 30 years I have defended and worked with journalists and fought for the right of freedom of expression,” he said.
In the video, the reporter had asked the former minister, Mr. Fani-Kayode who bankrolled his recent tour of several southern states. However, the former minister after hearing this got annoyed and said the journalist was stupid.
He said, “I am saying this on live TV. What type of stupid question is that? Bankrolling who? Do you know who you are talking to? I will not take any questions from this man. What type of insulting question is that? Which bankroll? To do what? Who can give me money for anything? Who do you think you are talking to? Go and report yourself to your publisher? Please don’t insult me here. I don’t want to take any questions from this man.
“I could see from your face before you got here, how stupid you are. Don’t ever talk to me like that. Who do you think you’re talking to? Bankroll who? You think I am one of those ones you… from who, when, how? You have a small mind, a very small mind. Don’t judge me by your own standards.”
Mr. Fani-Kayode’s reaction had earlier been condemned by Nigerians and the Nigeria Union of Journalists. He was asked to retract his words and apologize to the reporter. While the management of Daily Trust had threatened to report to the police if any harm came to its reporter.
© Technocrat Media House
For the purpose of republishing, ensure to quote to avoid copyright litigation.

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