David Oyedepo, the founder of Living Faith Church Worldwide also known as Winners’ Chapel, Sunday, stepped into the overheated polity and stoked another controversy surrounding the real identity of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Oyedepo, a bishop who spoke at Living Faith church HQ at Canaan land, Ota spared at the report of Buhari’s death and Jubril El Sudan as Nigeria’s impostor President in Aso Rock.
He, therefore, called on Buhari to, as a matter of urgency, address the nation on the hype.
Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, started the allegation in 2017 that the real Buhari elected in 2015 had died during one of his medical trips to London and been replaced by a clone named Jubril from Sudan with the help of surgery.
Kanu’s claim has enjoyed more mainstream prominence in recent weeks after a former minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, claimed on his Twitter account that the man in the Presidential Villa is not the same that was elected.
However, Tolu Ogunlesi, Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Digital and New Media, has lambasted Oyedepo over his statement on President being dead and cloned as Jubril Sudan.
Ogunlesi who took to his Twitter page, described Oyedepo as a hater of Buhari.
He wondered why the cleric would go to a far length to discredit Buhari.
Ogunlesi wrote: “Olatunji Dare, one of Nigeria’s finest satirists, wrote a piece titled ‘Buhari’s Double’ on Nov 27:
“Pastor of one of Nigeria’s LARGEST CHURCHES cites the SATIRE in a sermon (apparently yest) as evidence PMB likely dead.
“I know the Bishop has always detested PMB (it’s a free world, really, the right to dislike anyone is guaranteed constitutionally atink), but I don’t understand why he keeps going this far to peddle/amplify (from the pulpit) falsehood and disinformation about him. Really puzzling.“
Meanwhile, Kanu has clarified his claims over the authenticity of the man occupying Aso Rock, insisting he was an imposter and not cloned Buhari.
Kanu in a radio broadcast remained adamant President Muhammadu Buhari was dead during his last medical vacation in the UK.
He said his message to the world has always been that President Buhari was ‘dead’ and was replaced by another individual, Jubril Aminu Al-Sudani, as an imposter.
Buhari on Sunday denied claims that he had died and been replaced by a Sudanese impostor or a clone, breaking his silence on a rumour that has circulated on social media for months.
“It’s real me, I assure you. I will soon celebrate my 76th birthday and I will still go strong,” Mr Buhari told Nigerians in a town hall session in Poland, where he was attending conference, when asked about Jubril.
Mr Buhari, who is running for re-election in February, spent five months in Britain last year being treated for an undisclosed illness.
The rumour was further fuelled by a real-life event in May this year, when a Nigerian diplomat – Habibu Almu – was found dead in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum.
Nigeria’s foreign ministry said on May 14 that Almu had been “stabbed to death” and that a Sudanese woman of Nigerian origin had been arrested.
Sudanese police said the killing did not appear to be politically motivated, but conspiracy theorists have claimed the death was linked to an apparent cover-up of Mr Buhari’s death.
Several supporters of the president, including the Information minister, Lai Mohammed have long dismissed the rumour as ignorant and baseless.
Buhari. I never said he was cloned.
“The introduction of cloning into the narrative was a ploy to confuse the people.
“I am very grateful that the Sudanese government are doing something about this by investigating the matter.
“It must be mentioned that the mastermind of the fraud of Jibril is Abba Kyari. Has anyone seen him recently?” Knau said on radio Biafra broadcast.
Critics and opposition groups have also hit out at the president for choosing to only speak to the media whenever he’s away from the country.