False claim that Nyesom Wike has defected to APC resurfaces online

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A video showing the governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, in a virtual meeting has resurfaced online with a claim that he has defected from his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

The video, which had earlier surfaced in June with a similar claim after the party’s primary election, re-emerged on several social media platforms, especially WhatsApp.

Wike, who was a runner-up to Atiku Abubakar during the PDP presidential primary election held in May 2022, has always been at loggerheads with the party’s flagbearer (Atiku) since his defeat. The crisis worsened after he failed to secure the vice-presidential ticket of the party.

READ: Dino Melaye shares misleading video of Nigerian Army accusing Wike of attempting to compromise election

A Facebook user, Comr Collins Uduaghan Tosan, posted the video with a caption that read: 

“Gov Wike of Rivers Decamp to APC.”

The video has generated over 900 views as of Friday, November 4, 2022.

A TikTok account, @anobijones, also shared the claim with a caption thus:

“Breaking news! Wike Joins APC.” 

CLAIM

Wike defects to APC.

THE FINDINGS

Findings by The FactCheckHub show that the claim is FALSE.

Checks using keyword searches online show that the video had surfaced online with similar claims around June 2022 after the PDP presidential primary election.

Analysis of the video shows that it was cut from Wike’s interview with Arise TV broadcast on July 2021.

In the original video, Wike was reacting to the defection of some governors and legislators from the PDP to the ruling APC.

Prior to the interview, PDP had lost three governors and other party members to the APC in the space of seven months.

The River State governor responded to the question by the Arise TV anchor, Oseni Rufai, who asked if the reason members of the party, especially from the South-East, were leaving the party was because the party did not consider zoning. 

In the full video (29:00-32:00 minutes), Wike argued that the defectors could not justify their reasons for leaving the party. 

He added that their reasons should be in the interest of their people and their region and not because of their political relevance.

“What makes you a man is to be able to tell your people a simple truth,” Wike said.

Citing an instance, he said in the 57 minutes video: “I am leaving PDP to APC today because PDP have not done anything for South-South, PDP have not done anything in Rivers State, PDP have not done anything for my people. I would catalogue everything. I’m leaving PDP to APC. See the reasons why I’m leaving PDP to join you. Tell me, are you willing to do all these things that PDP didn’t do for me….” 

ALSO READ: Viral video does not show APC national chairman being stripped naked in Nasarawa

Meanwhile, Kelvin Ebiri, the Media Aide to Wike, had in June 2022 debunked the viral video, adding that it should be disregarded.

THE VERDICT 

The claim that Nyesom Wike has defected to the APC is FALSE; findings revealed that the video clip accompanying the posts was taken out of context.

Nurudeen Akewushola is a fact-checker with FactCheckHub. He has authored several fact checks which have contributed to the fight against information disorder. You can reach him via [email protected] and @NurudeenAkewus1 via Twitter.

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