Claim: Sahara Reporters on Facebook alleged that ex-NDDC board chairperson Lauretta Onochie was embarrassed and kicked out of her UK home.
Verdict: There is no sufficient evidence to support the claim. In contrast, Ms Onochie explained the occurrence of the day on X (Twitter).
Lauretta Onochie is the former media aide to President Muhammadu Buhari and Chairman of the Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). She was also appointed as the personal assistant to the president on social media in 2016.
Mr Buhari nominated the Onochie-led board in November 2022 amid controversy over the role played by the former special assistant on social media to the president.
Less than a year after she was appointed, President Bola Tinubu disbanded the board and management of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) led by Ms Onochie. In its place, he appointed new board members headed by Chiedu Ebie from Delta State.
Following this development, Sahara Reporters on Facebook alleged that Ms Onochie was embarrassed and kicked out by family members in the United Kingdom (UK). The post was shared with a video showing Ms Onochie sitting with different travelling bags. As of Sept. 3, 2023, the post has garnered 781 likes, 547 comments, and 91 shares.
DUBAWA decided to investigate the claim because of its sensitive nature and the personalities involved.
We looked into Ms Onochie’s social media profiles and discovered that she narrated the full accounts of the events on the said day on her X (formerly known as Twitter) profile. In her post, she explained that her cousin, whom she housed, tried to take her home, but after a battle, she recovered it.
“My Cousin, Victor Fejokwu and his wife, Ruth Emereze, were stranded, in fact, homeless at the time. I took pity on them, took them in, to house them in my home. A year ago, when I started making plans to return to continue housing them, they blocked my phone number. I had no access to my letters. Consequently, I missed quite a number of appointments,” part of the post read.
“They stopped contributing to the rent when they both had jobs, preferring to host lavish parties. I called the police, who dealt them a heavy blow, telling them they must vacate for me unless I was willing to continue to house them. The cowardly thug ran away before the arrival of the Police. The other young lady went to my bed and spread herself out. Of course, I got her out,” she narrated.
Ms Onochie stated that the couple began to plead, asking to be allowed to stay, but she refused, and they moved out two days later.
We conducted an advanced keyword search to find news reports on this event but found none except the report by Sahara reporters. However, major news outlets like Daily Post, Guardian, and Punch have also reported her recovering at home.
We also searched reverse images to see if the video was new, recirculated, or used out of context but found none.
There is no sufficient evidence to support the Sahara Reporter’s allegation. Meanwhile, Ms Onochie explained the occurrence on X and said she had recovered her home.