Anger As Stella Oduah Broke Her Silence On Facebook And Twitter
Embattled Minister of Aviation, Ms. Stella Oduah, broke her seven-day silence on social media on Tuesday, amidst backlash over the N255m bulletproof cars bought for her by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.
In a post on Twitter and Facebook, Oduah took credit for the signing of the much-publicised Bilateral Air Services Agreement with Israel.
Oduah, who was a member of the President’s entourage to Israel for this year’s Christian pilgrimage, had been prevented at the last-minute from signing the Bilateral Air Services Agreement with Israel. In her stead, Minister of State I, Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, signed the agreement on behalf of the Federal Government.
But Oduah said the BASA signing was a huge endorsement and product of the reforms which she championed in line with the Goodluck Jonathan administration’s Transformation Agenda.
The message on her Facebook wall read, “BASA between Nigeria and the State of Israel had been problematic for decades, with several aviation ministers and successive governments failing in attempts at putting pen to paper.
“The signing is a significant feat for the present administration and a huge endorsement of the Transformation Agenda of the present government as represented in the reforms championed by Aviation Minister, Princess Stella Adaeze Oduah, in the sector.”
But the message sparked off some angry reactions from Nigerians who have been calling for her resignation or outright sacking by the President over allegations of corruption, abuse of office and financial recklessness in the N255m car scandal.
Some Nigerians who wrote on her Twitter and Facebook pages on Tuesday asked her to hurriedly return home to answer for the allegations levelled against her, with a view to setting the records straight.
According to them, Oduah was wrong to be frolicking around and taking credit for an agreement in the circumstance where she has yet to clear her name in the car scandal.
Writing on the minister’s Facebook wall, a particular follower of hers, David Letam, described Oduah’s statement as another “frivolous jamboree” and stated that she should have been worried about the accusations against her.
“I want to congratulate the minister on this landmark achievement in signing the BASA with Israel. However, the honourable minister should come home to clear her name in this N255m car scam. The safety of Nigerians on the air is paramount than this frivolous jamboree,” Letam wrote.
An angry Twitter user, Donan Joshua, asked, “Na you sign am? See as she de talk am as if na she sign am! Madam, come back home and tell us about the money and the N255m bulletproof cars bought for you.”
One Sam Aremu said on Facebook that it was disappointing that the minister still had the guts to be commenting on national issues in spite of the facts in the public domain about the scandal rocking her ministry.
Aremu said, “If Aviation workers are protesting against Oduah’s N225m bulletproof cars, surely Nigerians are not happy about the whole thing. On her return, President Jonathan should call Oduah into his office, look straight into her beautiful blue eye and say to her romantically – ‘You are fired.’
Another respondent on her Facebook wall, with the name Tg Ibhaze, described Oduah as a bad example of womanhood and urged her to lead a good life. Ibhaze stated, “So shameful that Nigeria celebrates people like this madam in the first place. I really love you and the good work you started in reconstructing our airport.
“But by now you should have overlooked some things and be a good example. But as a princess and the daughter of a traditional ruler, you should know better to be a good example. Madam, please change.”
Also, one Kevin Jephthah-Ibennah observed that the car scandal amounted to extravagance in office and noted that she should have tendered an apology to Nigerians rather than taking glory for the BASA.
Jephthah-Ibennah said, “Why did you spend so much money on purchasing such cars? Don’t you know it’s extravagance? If I were your son, I would have advised you to return the money or better still sell and return the money with the sales proceeds as well as apologise to Nigerians because what you have done amounts to stealing.
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