Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said that his absence at the Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Award was due to the prevailing saga on the continued detention of Omoyele Sowore, the online publisher of Sahara Reporters.
The Vice President was to be honored with an award on Monday evening for his role in the justice reform in Lagos State at the while he was the state’s commissioner and Attorney General.
The centre, however, earlier announced the postponement of the recongition stating “the inappropriateness of the award” for him at this time.
In a fresh press release from the office of the Vice President, Osinbajo also acknowledged the insensitivity to be present for the event, which he had already convened the same message to the event’s organizers beforehand.
He said: ‘in view of the developments on Friday in the Sowore case, I think it would be insensitive and inappropriate to attend the ceremony’
The full release reads:
OFFICE OF THE VICE PRESIDENT
PRESS RELEASE FOR THE RECORDS:
VP OSINBAJO’S LETTER, DECEMBER 8, 2019 TO ORGANISERS OF THE 2019 ANTI-CORRUPTION DEFENDER AWARD
“I am extremely grateful for the recognition and award of the “Integrity Specialty of the Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism’s Anti-corruption Defender Award of 2019” to me.
“However, two reasons explain my absence. First is that I am currently in Abu Dhabi for an international meeting under the auspices of the government of the UAE where I am the keynote speaker.
“The award, I note, is for our Justice reform efforts in Lagos State. I had accepted the award with pride on behalf of the excellent Justice Sector team we had.
“Second, in view of the developments on Friday in the Sowore case, I think it would be insensitive and inappropriate to attend the ceremony.
“Please accept my heartfelt apologies and extend the same to the other members of the organizing team. God bless you.”