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Having most woefully failed to blackmail and intimidate Asiwaju Bola Tinubu into dancing to its tune and attending its usually rowdy and rambunctious events, Arise Tv, alongside its sister outfit, Thisday Newspaper, has been resorting to all manner of the most shamefully unprofessional shenanigans to get back at Tinubu including the deployment of the most atrociously fake news items, as well as, rumours and barefaced lies against his candidacy.

If it is not Arise presenting a forged Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, circular as breaking news, it would be Thisday accusing Tinubu of the murder of someone still fully alive!

But the pathological hustler is the owner of these two fast decomposing news organizations, Nduka Obaigbena, will not relent for a hustler is immune to shame.

The latest caper he is trying his luck with is to have his minions spread the rumour that the Tinubu/Shettima campaign has asked him to sack his errand boy a  pathetic excuse for a journalist, Rufai Oseni.

And some people actually believe this nonsense!

Even Oby Ezekwesili, a woman arguably most remarkable for leaping before she looks, has gone to town in sackcloth, weeping and wailing that Mr Oseni should not be fired for “doing his job”!

Along with a rabble of very noisy limelight huggers and their astonishingly clueless followers and supporters on social media, they have taken up the battle cry over a completely nonexistent issue entirely concocted by Thisday and Arise Tv, themselves!

It is the very worst species of junk journalism where the newsroom is putrified into a cesspit of fabrication with its practitioners hopeful that something will stick to the detriment of the target in assistance of the inglorious agenda in play.

That is what the incurable hustler in Nduka Obaigbena has done to his two media outfits.

Dele Alake and Bayo Onanuga asked for Rufai Oseni, of all people, to be sacked?

Who the hell is some total urchin like Rufai Oseni before the likes of Onanuga or Alake that they would demand his sack, and from Arise Tv, of all places, a medium that has so completely flown off the handle that the seasoned and authentic professionals they are thoroughly despise it?

On his part, Mr Oseni, ever the typical fake Lagos boy of a pathetic “alarm poser” with absolutely nothing of substance within, and thus constrained unto affectations of nonexistent ability, is beside himself lapping up the attention this entirely contrived and patently false “persecution” has brought his way.

As the pitiable addict of attention he is, he is happy to pretend that a total fabrication on the part of Thisday/Arise, where he works, is reality, even to the extent of dragging God into the entire scam by claiming he is a Christian who does not hate his fellowman – as if anyone cared!

While Rufai Oseni was rather animatedly, though quite pitiably, trying to link Bola Tinubu with drug running, Reuben Abati would sit there pretending he is not a lawyer who ought to know when a person has been indicted, tried, convicted and sentenced or not, even if his halfbaked graduate of a colleague might not know the difference!

When it is the turn of Abati to pretend he does not know, both as journalist and lawyer, that Tinubu has, and, never had any case to answer, not only in America but absolutely nowhere else in the entire world (unlike their boss, Obaigbena), it is then Rufai’s turn to sit quietly, looking rather vacant and listless, as usual, pretending not to know that Dr. Abati, sitting right next to him, once happily ran for office as running mate to a confirmed drug dealer who strenuously fought extradition to the United States even up till the very day he died!

What a crew for a morning show!

I went to the University of Lagos and even back then, met there, a great many good and great and wonderful people amongst students, faculty and staff.

But it was also at the University of Lagos that I first became more sharply aware of the phenomenon of the “poser”, the sort of personality the musician known as Baba Fryo once sang about in one of his hits.

Rufai Oseni emerges before me as the archetype of that pathetic and most disorderly cosmetic category.

He is not someone, someone like me could ever possibly admire; he is someone I would pity and pray for, for it is not adulation that merely reinforces his misguidedness that he needs but healing and retrieval from the prison of inferiority complex in which complicated factors of nature and nurture have clearly deposited him.

As for the self-entitlement on the part of Thisday and Arise Tv, which has led them down this most inglorious and perfidious path, it is as unprofessional as unprofessionalism gets and should be rejected, condemned and opposed by all real journalists.

I had pointed out elsewhere that the press exists partly to fend off dictatorship and cannot then become despotic itself.

Thisday/Arise has most miserably gone rogue and is behaving like a thug rather than a proper news organisation.

I actually sympathize with the real journalists who work for both outfits, many of whom are true professionals at the top of their game.

It is truly unfortunate that they have ended up with a well-known and very cheap hustler for an employer, browbeating them into truly shameful conduct, while foisting quacks and hacks like Rufai Oseni on them as colleagues they must then have to work with.

Nduka Obaigbena may be a very visible media entrepreneur who loves to hug the limelight, rather much in a psychologically significant manner, but when it comes to actual journalistic track record, he fully knows he is nowhere even remotely close to the likes of Bayo Onanuga or Dele Alake.

What has happened with his ongoing spat with the Tinubu/Shettima campaign is not the case of a good man gone bad; it is the case of a very bad man showing his true colours, except that this time around, and quite unfortunately for him, he has messed with the wrong people.

It is increasingly becoming clear to actually thinking people (as opposed to the thoughtless and rabid devourers of rumours, innuendos and fake news, out there) that Obaigbena is simply uncontrollably miffed that Tinubu has not succumbed to his usually successful brand of blackmail, wherefore, powered by his selfentitled approach to life, he is determined to continue with the operation hoping that Tinubu would crack and play ball at some point.

This is the classical methodology of “Yahoo Boys” and other categories of fraudsters and similar crooks, by the way, except that for the “guyman” Obaigbena is supposed to be, he clearly picked out the wrong mark this time around!

What both Obaigbena and co have not realised is that their recent shenanigans against Bola Tinubu and the Tinubu/Shettima campaign is only steadily distancing them from real journalism while setting them apart from the rest of the mainstream media in a manner that should eventually and most probably irretrievably relegate them to patently yellow status.

While I very much doubt that I would spare a tear for Obaigbena, himself, it would be a most calamitous and enduring tragedy for the real journalists he has enticed and corrupted and intimidated into blatant unprofessionalism even long after they’ve come to their senses and abandoned the rags he owns but presents to the world as proper media houses.

Onokpasa, a lawyer and member, All Progressives Congress, APC, Presidential Campaign Council, writes from Abuja.

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