As reactions continue to trail former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode’s three part essay that followed the deportation of some destitute of Igbo extraction from Lagos to Anambra State, the controversial former minister has once more stressed that he was misunderstood.
In an interview with LEADERSHIP Sunday yesterday in Abuja, Fani-Kayode said his true intentions as expressed in one of the articles, “The Bitter Truth About The Igbo”, was misconstrued by Nigerians especially the Igbos.
According to him, “It was never my intention to hurt anybody or to in anyway disparage the Igbos, just in the same way that I felt that my brother and friend Orji Uzor Kalu’s comment about Lagos being ‘no man’s land’ and that 55% of the revenue generated in Lagos and businesses in Lagos belong to the Igbos. I didn’t take offense personally and I didn’t think the Yoruba people did, but we disagreed with him. And in the same way, I didn’t feel my own analysis about the Igbos would upset the Igbo people, they may disagree but I really didn’t realise that it would upset them to this extent. So, it is regrettable that anything I had said would have made anybody fell uncomfortable. It certainly wasn’t my intention to hurt anybody,
“I can’t apologise for my expressions in my essay. What I can say I regret is the reactions that it elicited among people. My historical expressions have not been in any way refuted, there are historical facts and am not going to pretend and say that I was not accurate. So, I can’t apologise for historical facts that I enunciated, but what I can say however, that has been much of big regret for me is that my intentions were misconstrued by members of the Igbo community in this country. I have absolutely nothing against Igbos.
“As a matter of fact I have very strong ties with the Igbo people, myself and my family for three or four generations we have very strong ties with the Igbos. So, for anybody to say that am anti-Igbo that means I have been misunderstood which is regrettable. This is only an intellectual debate; it doesn’t go deep with me. It is an intellectual exercise,” he stressed.