Thisday newspaper suspends staff who wrote fake Oyedepo visa story


The newspaper that first reported the fake story that the US embassy denied Living Faith general overseer Oyedepo a visa has suspended the two staff that wrote it. The news turned out to be false and the two editors who approved the news have been suspended.

“The management of THISDAY Newspapers Limited has suspended two of its deputy editors, Mr. Yemi Ajayi and Mr. Olawale Olaleye, over the story: “Drama as US Embassy Denies Bishop Oyedepo Visa,” published last Friday,” ThisDay said in a statement on Tuesday.

“The story, which claimed that Bishop Oyedepo was denied visa by the US Embassy, was subsequently refuted by the embassy to be false.”

The report published and later deleted on THISDAY website early on Friday claimed the embassy denied the pastor visa renewal. In the reports published by Thisday newspaper, the post claimed that while the embassy did not give any other reason for the now fictitious visa denial, it said that Oyedepo did not qualify for visa renewal in its assessment and urged him to reapply.

“David Oyedepo in anger created a scene while querying the grounds for his refusal, stressing that he had been travelling to the states as far back as 1980s and had not violated any rules or committed any crime to have warranted being denied a renewal of his visa,” the report said. But the US Embassy said the report was false and ‘manufactured’.

The newspaper company said also “investigated the publication and found that the two deputy editors failed to follow its well-established traditions of carrying out the necessary checks and confirmations expected of personnel of their status in a sensitive story of that nature.”

The newspaper apologised to Oyedepo for the embarrassment the story might have caused him.