Douye Diri, the governor of Bayelsa state, has dismissed claims he leaked a sex tape belonging to Zanele Sifuba, a South African lawmaker.
Sifuba is a speaker in South African province of Free State.
The lawmaker made the headlines after a sex tape linked to her surfaced online.
The video was said to have been leaked after Sifuba allegedly refused to pay her blackmailer the sum of R300,000.
In the wake of the sex tape saga, a Facebook account with name of the legislator had shared a picture of Diri while accusing him of leaking the clip.
“This is the picture of the man who leaked our video. He is my lover whom I trusted. A Nigerian official, by name Douye Diri. I trusted him with my life, but he betrayed me. Please share for the whole world to know the kind of man he is,” the post reads.
But in a statement on Saturday, Kola Oredipe, aide to the governor on new media, dismissed the allegation against his principal.
Oredipe said those bent on tarnishing the image of the governor were behind the video.
He also said Diri has no link with the lawmaker, adding that the governor has not travelled to South Africa in 10 years.
“Our attention has been drawn to a fake news circulating online about Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State over an alleged nude video leak of a South African female legislator, Zanele Sifuba,” the statement reads.
“For a scandal that initially appeared on the South African media space on October 31 and was first linked to a ‘Nigerian youth,’ it is obvious those behind the new twist opened the parody account with the deliberate intention to tarnish the image of the Bayelsa Governor.
“Sadly, even without any effort to confirm the ridiculous allegation against the governor of a state, a few Nigerian online platforms rushed to publish the fake news from the ‘Zanele Sifuba Facebook’ account without investigating its source.
“While we have read about a purported attempt to collect R300,000 from her, the ‘young blackmailer’ is certainly not Governor Diri.
“Ask the question: why would a governor of an oil-rich state resort to blackmail for a mere R300,000 (about N8 million). This is simply ridiculous.
“Clearly, political mischief-makers have gone on overdrive in their desperation to tarnish the reputation of a hard working, calm, peaceful and focused Governor of Bayelsa State.
“This story is just another failed attempt to distract the man that is single-minded on his developmental agenda for his state and who has in the last six weeks devoted his time and energy to managing the devastating flood that hit Bayelsa.
“The public is, therefore, advised to discountenance the news as it lacks merit and has no bearing whatsoever with the Bayelsa Governor.
“Let it also be stated that there are consequences for publishing falsehood. The anonymity of the social media should not serve as shield for calumny and character assassination, with grave legal implications. Unfortunately, those portals circulating this unverified post have fallen into the trap and its repercussions.”