FACT CHECK: Did Yahaya Bello attend Tinubu’s meeting with governors?

Several posts on social media have insinuated that Yahaya Bello, former governor of Kogi state, on Thursday, attended the emergency meeting President Bola Tinubu held with state governors, including some key ministers, at the council chambers of the State House, Abuja.

At the meeting, Tinubu and the governors agreed on the need to recruit more Nigerians into the police force, to tackle the growing insecurity in the country.

After the meeting, an X (formerly Twitter) user posted a picture showing Bello standing with governors and Tinubu at the presidential villa.

In the photo in question, Bello can be seen standing between Hope Uzodinma, the governor of Imo, and his counterpart from Lagos, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, with Tinubu positioned in the centre, swarmed by other governors.


Bello was governor of Kogi state on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from 2016 to 2024. He was succeeded by Usman Ododo who was sworn into office on January 27.

As a former governor, Bello isn’t eligible to represent Kogi in a meeting with Tinubu and governors; instead, only Ododo or his deputy can fill that role.

Checks by TheCable revealed that the picture being circulated on social media was posted by the presidency handle on X. The photo was used to accompany a message on the outcome of the meeting.

Further analysis showed that the picture was taken at the first meeting Tinubu had with state governors after he was elected president. Bello was still the governor of the north-central state at the time.

Google reverse check shows that the picture had been in existence since June 2023.

Also, the outfits of the leaders in the old photo are evidently different from what they wore in the photos from Thursday’s meeting.

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