Our reporter/ The presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi on Monday for the first time, addressed the controversy surrounding his encounter with London Airport immigration officials.
The former Anambra State Governor, in an interview with Arise TV, explained that he was never arrested by UK immigration officials.
The Obi-Datti Media campaign office had in April announced that the LP Presidential candidate was harassed and detained at Heathrow Airport in London over alleged impersonation.
The UK immigration declined to comment on the matter following enquiries by a section of the Nigerian media.
However, speaking on the matter on Monday, Obi said he was stopped for a routine immigration check.
“I was never arrested, I was never detained. And I did not commit any offence. I was stopped for a routine immigration check because there appeared to be a duplication of my identity and all this lasted for a maximum of 20 minutes, he said.
“I lived in the UK from 1993 until 2005. From then till now is a period of 30 years. I have never been questioned, arrested or detained in any country in the world. I have never for any reason found myself being questioned for any offence.
“It was a routine immigration check and I was actually given all the due respect by the border personality that interviewed me, who told me ‘your identity has been duplicated, be careful’.”
Obi noted that despite once having a permanent residency in the UK, he chose to return to Nigeria, adding that “I was born a Nigerian. I will want to live and die in Nigeria”.
The LP standard-bearer also spoke on the accusation of treason levelled against him by Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture while addressing foreign media in Washington DC.
He described Mohammed’s action as the “height of rascality”, adding that the trip was a waste of taxpayers’ money.
“I committed a treasonable offence and I am in Onitsha and my minister went to announce in Washington,” he said.
“The amount it cost Nigeria for him to go and announce that in Washington can build a block of six classrooms in a primary school.
“If you go to his village you will see primary schools without chairs where students sit on the floor to learn”.
“These are the reasons why we want a new Nigeria where things will work the way it works in other climes.”
Obi added that the minister could have invited him to defend the alleged act of treason.
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