By Abubakar Adam Ibrahim
Fake twitter account by a certain Ima Sadiq, tweeting @imamsadiq123 has surfaced to discredit the Presidential candidacy of General Muhammadu Buhari of the opposition All Progressive Congress.
The account which was started on Friday and has some 51 followers is posing as a Buhari supporting Islamic cleric, suggesting that Buhari’s singular mission in Aso Rock is to entrench the Shariah law. Already vigilant social media users have rubbished the twitter account as an attempt to discredit Buhari’s candidacy by echoing the propaganda that have been used over the years to portray Buhari as a religious fanatic.
Tolu Ogunlesi, journalist and social commentator, who has been blowing the whistle on the account told Sunday Trust that “it is obviously a fake account. Clearly is someone who is being mischievous, someone who wants to pose as a Buhari supporter to exploit religious tensions.”
The profile picture of the twitter handle was initially that of the US first openly gay imam, Daayiee Abdullah, and when this was pointed out, the operator of the handle changed it to that of Washington DC Masjid imam, Abdul Alim Musa.
The twitter handle has attracted pro-Jonathan supporters, including the PDP Youth Frontier (@PDPYF) which have engaged the purported imam to further explain his tweets.
This was one of the exchanges on the twitter account: PDP Youth Frontier @PDPYF: @imamsadiq123 You mean you don’t believe that Nigeria is a secular state? Are you supporting Buhari bks he Believes in Shaaria law?
Writer and publisher, Eghosa Imasuen says the kind of social media users that have engaged the handle are “the same robots that are paid N100,000 monthly.” “It would be tragic if it wasn’t so transparent,” he said. Popular blogger and tweeter, Japhet Omojuwa also speaking to Sunday Trust said there is an antecedence of something like this.
“The Modus Operandi looks like something we have seen before with the Wendell Simlin scandal. The idea is to make it look like a Buhari supporter and enforce all the things that have been said about him in the past. “I have asked for it [the account] to be reported to Twitter. It is a good thing that it is being ratted out so that the impact can be checked,” he said.
Earlier in the year, Presidential aide, Reno Omokri, sent out documents in the name of a certain Wendell Simlin trying to associate former Central Bank Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi of being behind Boko Haram.
The president’s senior adviser on social media however forgot to remove his digital signature on the documents and was widely condemned for his action and attempt at spreading false information on a perceived opponent of the Jonathan government.