FACT-CHECK: Did Shettima-Amosun Discuss Biafran Agitation and how Hausa-Yoruba Can outsmart Igbo Dominance in a Leaked Audio?
Claim: An alleged “leaked” audio conversation between the Vice Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Kashim Shettima and former governor of Ogun state, Ibikunle Amosun discussing the Boafran agitations and how Hausa and Yoruba could outsmart the igbo for politica dominance.
Full Text: The audio conversation seems to have taken place few months of the election of President Muhammadu Buhari after the defeat of former President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015.
Shettima a former governor of Borno State and serving Senator and Amosun allegedly pointed out that to checkmate Igbo’s attempt for political dominance, Yorubas and the North must strategised to block such moves.
The voices in the audio claim that the north and the west had been taken for granted and betrayed over the years by the south east (Igbos) who were strategically building a nation within their nation.
The 20 minutes audio, which was converted to video format had the images of Shettima and Amosun with a Caption “Leaked Audio.”
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Verification: Using speech recognition freeware Deepgram, PRNigeria extracted the audio clips and tried to convert it to text for analysis against his other speeches, but the result was not so satisfactory even through certain transcribed words didn’t match some of his known public speeches.
PRNigeria then deployed a speech detection expert, to anlyse extracted speeches from his TV presentations/interviews, his motions/debates on the floor of the national assembly, as governor and even in public outings, and found out that some words contradicted pronouncements when matched with the voice on the alleged leaked tape.
For instance, Shettima pronounces conclusion as “conclujion” and uses the refrain “by and large” often times but this was not the case in the leaked audio.
Also, he pronounces the term job with the “b” as silent and pronounces just without a “t.” Typically, “S” is silent in his pronunciations and he pronounces “f” as “p” typical of the northern diction which was not the case in the leaked audio.
While the person in the leaked audio seemed to be a fast talker, the known Shettima talks emphatically, calculatively and pauses intermittently as if to reflect on the next words that will come out of his mouth.
In addition an aura of philosophy embodies his submissions and talks and he always juxtaposes instances, relating it to a philosophical point of view most often but this was not the case in the alleged leaked audio.
Meanwhile, the audio has been in circulation since 2017.
In June 2017, a clarification was issued by then Governor Shettima through his then spokesman, Isa Gusau from Maiduguri.
The statement clarified that, “”The caller who is being presented as Governor Shettima speaks very fast as against the relatively slower tone of Shettima. The caller’s didn’t have any Kanuri accent whereas Governor Shettima has some Kanuri accent. The caller had at the opening of his 20 minutes conversation with a so called Governor Amosun, first introduced himself as a PDP member whereas Governor Shettima is known to be in the APC. Also in the conversation, the caller addresses his recipient as ‘Kunle’ with no respectful prefix of ‘Your Excellency’ as Shettima is known to be using in most of his conversations with fellow Governors.”
Concluion/Verdict: The leaked audio is a voice of an impersonator who didn’t get Shettima’s intonation and diction right. It is therefore conjured and false.
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