Jonathan alleges mischief in Cambridge Analytica data mining scandal

Former President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday insisted that he was not aware of the alleged electoral fraud raised against Cambridge Analytica.

The current administration is said to be scrutinizing the reports of the data mining firm Cambridge Analytica, which swiped the data of more than 50 million Facebook users to sway elections in many country including Nigeria.

It was said to have waged a campaign to perpetuate discord and hack into personal records of the then leading opposition Candidate, Muhammadu Buhari in 2007.

To get to the bottom of the issue, the Federal Government is said to have set up an in-house committee to investigate whether Cambridge Analytica’s work for the then ruling party, the People’s Democratic Party, PDP in 2007 and 2015 general elections campaigns to break the laws of this country or infringed on the rights of other parties and their candidates.

Depending on the outcome of the investigation, a special investigator may be appointed and possibly, criminal prosecutions by the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami.

But a statement on Thursday by Jonathan’s spokesman, Ikechukwu Eze, entitled “Re: ‘Jonathan unaware PDP used Cambridge Analytica, spokesman claims’” reads “My attention has been drawn to a trending story entitled ‘Jonathan unaware PDP used Cambridge Analytica, spokesman claims’.

“I write to clarify that there is an element of mischief in the story, with the reporter disingenuously seeking to drag the People’s Democratic Party into the report, and make the party look like an accomplice, in a case it was not even mentioned.

“The truth is that in my reaction to a question from an AFP reporter in a telephone chat on whether the former President knew about the alleged involvement of Cambridge Analytica in the 2015 elections, I had simply responded thus: “All the stories written about the subject
so far had all clarified that Dr. Goodluck Jonathan was not aware of such attempt, if there were any.”

“Although I was correctly quoted, to the effect that “former President Jonathan was not aware of it”, I consider the attempt to link my response with an orchestrated PDP involvement in the allegation as simply preposterous. This is because the PDP was neither mentioned in
the scandal nor came up in my chat with the reporter. It is instructive that the whistleblower who originated the allegation has been consistent in associating it to an unnamed businessman, who was neither linked to the party nor to the Jonathan campaign.

“It is therefore deceitful for any pundit to blame the allegation on the PDP or anybody close to the former President, even before investigations were concluded,” he stated.

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