Fact-Checking Report: SOLACEBASE stands by Kano deputy governor’s story
By Elijah Akoji
A fact-checking story by SOLACEBASE on November 1st indicated that the Deputy Governor of Kano State Aminu Abdulssalam Gwarzo gave misleading information when he said that he had successfully sponsored 52 patients to undergo free eye surgery at Makkah Specialist Eye Clinic in Kano State.
Gwarzo’s tweet made on X formerly known as Twitter on the 9th of September 2023 at 7:43 pm reads, “In keying into our administration’s commitment to providing access to quality healthcare for all, today, I sponsored 52 people to undergo free eye surgery at Makkah Specialist Eye Clinic, Kano.”
The tweet attracted over 10,000 Views, 67 Shares, 3 Quotes, 434 Likes, and 1 Bookmark.
This investigation discovered the fact that there is no evidence to show, as the management of Makkah Hospital has denied the claim attributing it to a mere political statement by the deputy governor of the state.
However, the Chief Press Secretary to the deputy governor, Ibrahim Garba Shuaibu in a statement dated November 2nd denied the report, saying that it was an unverified Twitter handle.
In the fact-checking report, the Chief Press Secretary was given a fair hearing for over three weeks to comment on the issue before publication but rather avoided the reporter with failed appointments and refusal to reply to WhatsApp and text messages, in most instances.
The communication between the reporter and the Chief Press Secretary was also published in the story as evidence of communication for a fair hearing which was deliberately avoided by Ibrahim Garba Shuaibu.
However, it is already an established fact that the Blue tick badge for X users is no longer a verification badge, a badge that used to be based on a person’s profile or professional affiliation, the Blue Tick is now based on personal preference and monetary affordability.
The Bio of the Twitter handle reads “Official handle of Aminu Abdulsallam Gwarzo, the Deputy Governor of Kano State, Personal tweets are signed – AA Gwarzo”
The X account formerly known as Twitter with the user name @Aminugwarzo officially signed into this social media application in March 2014 and now has about 8,935 followers.
Followers of the account include the official X handle of the governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf his principal with the account @Kyusufabba, and the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor who later unfollowed the account immediately after the report began to trend, other followers of the account include aides to both the governor and the deputy governor.
With such a profile of followers on that account, one will assume it would have been easy to report the account as a fraudulent and mischievous account as claimed or as one that does not represent the views of the deputy governor, knowing that the account is captured as an official Twitter handle of the deputy governor, a crime which should have been considered an impersonation and punishable by law.
The account which fully began publishing reports after the inauguration of this government has constantly shared all the outings of the deputy governor with a full coverage of the event, which continues to draw likes, shares, and comments.
While this handle continues to propagate the outings of the deputy governor, it is nearly impossible for the account not to be noticed as a fake or an unofficial account which has no relationship with the office of the deputy governor, as claimed by the Chief Press Secretary.
According to the chief press secretary in his denial statement, over 500 patients benefitted from KNSG free mobile eye screening in Gwarzo LGA in July, in collaboration with Makkah Specialists Eye Hospital.
The Hospital Manager, Yusuf Batsari, confirmed that the hospital had long before this administration, been supporting the Kano State Government with the supply of free eye drops and supply of eyeglasses to cataract patients across the state, as a responsibility of the organization being a non-for-profit organization.
“Truly I can confirm to you that we have had long support for cataract patients in Kano state, but this is something we do without government sponsorship, it is good I state this very clearly.
“We supply to the government and the government then supply the locations based on need, and this has been the only support we have for the state. There has not been any MOU between the Kano State Government and the Hospital,” Batsari said.
“But for the claim that the deputy governor sponsored patients for eye surgery, that claim is not true and we disassociate ourselves from such claim,” he added.
Meanwhile, this is not the first time the deputy governor, Aminu Abdulssalam Gwarzo has been entangled in a controversial denial of statements.
It could be recalled that after the demolition of structures at the Eid ground by the present administration, in a viral video, the deputy governor was heard saying unwholesome items were discovered in a bunker in the demolished structures.
However, immediately after the story was published by the media (Not SOLACEBASE) there was an outright denial from the office of the deputy governor.