Garba Shehu, spokesman to President Muhammadu Buhari, has apologised for saying only 10 students were kidnapped from Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, Katsina state.
Shehu apologised in a post on his social media handles on Friday.
Over 300 students were kidnapped from the school on December 11, after an attack by bandits.
They were, however, rescued on Thursday and arrived in Katsina on Friday.
While Aminu Masari, governor of Katsina, had said over 300 students were missing after the attack, Shehu had claimed that some of the abducted students who escaped told the military that 10 of them were taken away by the gunmen.
The presidential spokesman, however, said he was sorry for the “incorrect communication”, adding that it was not his intention to downplay the seriousness of the situation.
“I apologise for the incorrect communication citing that only 10 students were kidnapped at the science school, Kankara,” he wrote.
“This communication of numbers was provided by persons that should ideally know. These numbers were seen to conflict with what was available at that time.
“Please understand that this communication was in no way done to downplay the seriousness of the situation.
“Please accept my sincere apologies on this matter as we continue to move our great Nation Nigeria forward. Thank you.”
I apologize for the incorrect communication citing that only 10 students were kidnapped at the science school, Kankara
— Garba Shehu (@GarShehu) December 18, 2020
However, his apology has generated varying reactions on social media, with some persons insisting that as spokesman to the president, he should have verified the figure first.
Below are some reactions.
The penalty for propagating FAKE NEWS should be applied here if this administration is truly a beacon of truth and upright position as it's purported to be. We await that move from the presidency.
— PTimmydosh #EndSARS (@timmydosh) December 18, 2020
While we accept your Apologize that makes no difference. It is always important to cross check facts before hurrying to misinform Nigerians.
You were a mentor and role model to many, but you have lost most of those great minds that once looked up to you due to inconsistency
— Wisdom Ikuli (@IkuliWisdom) December 18, 2020
On your part, you should've been circumspect before rushing to the media to dish out info. You should know by now whatever you say is taken as the view of The Presidency. We must always get our act right before disseminating info knowing the era we are. Go & sin no more. Be wary!
— ỌMỌ́GBỌ́LÁHÀN BABS (ỌMỌNAIJA🇳🇬) (@OgbeniCzar) December 18, 2020
Oga!! You have always been making errors in passing information. It was desame you that blamed farmers for their death in Borno state, and later said people misunderstood what you meant.
— d boss B (@mshelia_barka) December 18, 2020
10 students were kidnapped
340 got released
Buhari is a miracle worker!!! #OurBoysAreBack
Try getting facts before arguing and contradicting each other…
Anyway… We accept it😉
— King Leo Shorlex™💓 (@awoniyishola) December 18, 2020
Where did you get the information from? Or who gave you the number before? Bcos they brought them back? If they didn't you could have continued in that narrative Abi?
— fobis (@iamfobisglobal) December 18, 2020
Apology accepted. Your courage to accept you fed the public with wrong information is equally commendable. However, a public servant in your capacity should always get the facts correct before making public statements- in order words, 'be quick to hear but slow to speak'.
— Muyiwa Adedara (@muyiwalawrence) December 18, 2020
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