A former Governor of Delta State, Chief James Onanefe Ibori, has debunked the news that he was deported from the United Kingdom.
Ibori equally denied the report that he has opened a Twitter account shortly after he arrived from the United Kingdom on Saturday.
In a statement on Monday by his Media Assistant, Tony Eluemunor, the former Governor of Delta State explained that reports reached him Sunday afternoon that a Twitter handle in his name: @ChiefIbori, with his picture too, has been trending on the internet.
He said he did not open the account and warned Nigerians not to fall victim of the fraudster who created that Twitter account for whatever reason.
The statement said: “We can only suspect that a confidence trickster must have created that account to lure incredulous Nigerians into a 419 trap.
“Please, Chief Ibori would like the general public to disregard that account and to stop assessing the Twitter handle over matters or discussions affecting him as he neither nor those working for him created that Twitter handle or has ever commented on it.
“The Twitter administrators have been advised to shut down the account and whenever Ibori sees the need to create a Twitter account, the public would be so advised.”
Ibori equally distanced himself from the report that he was deported from the United Kingdom.
He said: “Even though I had wanted to publicise my return to Nigeria so that wrong meanings would not be read into the public interest I knew my presence in Nigeria would elicit, and also because I never wanted any crowd that would gather because of me to disturb a single Nigerian in the course of their duties, all my efforts to keep the trip secret failed.
“The airline that brought me into Nigeria is public knowledge.
“So, too, my disembarkation Airport.
“So, it would be easy to verify that I was not deported because the deporting country’s officials would always hand over deportees to Nigerian Immigration officials and documents would also be exchanged.
“Those who have chosen to report lies, and claim that I was deported know that no document exists anywhere in the world to back up those malicious claims.”
The statement added that a record of documented letters between Ibori’s solicitors and the British Home office exist, which proves beyond all reasonable doubts that Ibori was granted leave to exit Britain “voluntarily”, and he announced, as was reported by both the Reuters and the BBC, and several Nigerian news outlets that he would return to Nigeria in a matter of days.
It said: “He did not announce the exact day so as to avoid the situation that would result in crowd control challenges for the security services.
“Moreover, last week Tuesday, 31st January Ibori confirmed in his last court appearance in Britain that he will appeal his conviction because the trial was riddled with corruption and other reasons.
“The court could not fix a date for confiscation hearing in deference to Ibori’s impending appeal, and so adjourned hearing till 17th March; so the confiscation hearing will not start till after the appeal against Ibori’s conviction. This remains one of Ibori’s greatest victories since the London case started.
“Ibori’s Counsel requested for the adjournment in the hope that the appeal would have been filed before 17th March, thereby putting the confiscation hearing on hold.”