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Leadership Newspapers demands apology from The Guardian over Stanley Azuakola’s satire

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Leadership Newspapers demands apology from The Guardian over Stanley Azuakola’s satire

by Dare Lawal

Sometimes satire is hard to get, especially when it’s about you.

A Pinch of N(u)ews, a work of satire written by The Scoop’s Stanley Azuakola, and syndicated on The Guardian, YNaija and The Scoop, has been condemned by Leadership Newspapers.

It’s likely that Leadership Newspapers did not understand that A Pinch of N(u)ews which has been running for almost two years is a satirical bent to the major news happenings of the week.

READ: A Pinch Of N(U)Ews: Leadership Newspaper Leaks Yet Another Presidential Directive

In last Sunday’s (14th April) edition of A Pinch of N(u)ews, Leadership Newspaper was mentioned, with the piece stating that they released another presidential directive, this time asking that the Polish prime minister, Donald Tusk, who visited Nigeria last week, be placed under 24-hour surveillance.

Leadership Newspapers released a statement condemning the Guardian Newspapers for publishing the piece. They demanded for an apology.

Here’s the full statement:

The management of LEADERSHIP Newspapers has refuted a story published in the Sunday  Guardian  April 14, 2013, which claimed that it had published a story on a presidential directive asking security agencies to place a 24-hour surveillance on the Polish Prime Minister, Donald Tusk, who visited Nigeria last week, throughout his stay in the country.

The Guardian in the story written by one Stanley Azuakola claimed that LEADERSHIP published a story which had the potential to damage the cordial Nigeria-Poland relations.

Parts of the Guardian story which was attributed to LEADERSHIP read: “In the new directive they published, the president reportedly wrote, ‘you know Poland currently occupies the position of 20th largest economy in the world, the position which Nigeria desperately covets; hence all efforts during the visit must be geared towards ‘cross-Polishnation’.

“Cross-Polishnation is the process whereby Nigeria must cross the Polish nation and overthrow it as the 20th largest economy in the world. To achieve this, the Polish prime minister must be placed under 24-hour surveillance throughout his stay in the country.”

The Guardian also quoted the spokesman of the president, Reuben Abati, to have debunked the report, saying: “This desperate conspiracy between ‘Leakership’ newspaper and ‘Liar’ Mohammed would surely fail.

“The president respects the rule of law, so he will not personally do anything about it; however, we do not know if the police feel the same way. So, they may or may not receive a visit soon.”

The management of LEADERSHIP described the story as a deliberate mischief aimed at disparaging it before its highly respected readers and called on the Guardian management to, without delay, tender an unreserved apology.

READ: FG Drags Leadership Newspaper Reporters To Court; Face Life Imprisonment If Convicted

It is not the first time that an apology would be demanded by someone featured on A Pinch of N(u)ews. In 2011, NTA reporter Emma Okondu also demanded an apology over an edition of A Pinch of N(u)ews in which he was featured. Below is the item which the reporter found controversial:

NTA reporter, Emma Okondu, has been withdrawn from covering Aso Rock following a blunder in his report on the honour conferred on President Jonathan by the people of Liberia as “Grand Cordon in the most Venerable Order of the Pioneers of the Federal Republic of Liberia.” Emma Okondu’s offence was that he erroneously referred to the award as “Grand Condom in the most Vulnerable Order of the Panniers of the Federal Republic of Blab-area.” As he said it, smatterings of laughter could be heard in the background but it is unclear if the gaffe was intentional.

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