Gold iPhones order: by Nigerian govt or an individual?

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Real gold iPhone

On the heels of The Independent’s report that Amjad Ali of Gold & Co. claimed that the Nigerian government ordered 53 gold iPhones for 53rd independence celebrations, Simon Usborne the writer of the news report tweeted later to say that Ali got carried away and has retracted. Here is the tweet:

News of the ostentatious order had generated angst among Nigerians who were already frustrated with a federal government that is more popular for failing to live up to its responsibilities in a country with one of the highest poverty rates in the world. The claim by Ali in the news report on The Independent’s website has now been modified to read thus:

Ali says he is fulfilling an order from a Nigerian individual for 53 gold iPhones to mark the country’s 53rd year of independence from Britain next month.

This raises the question: Did Ali get a phone call from highly placed people in government to retract his earlier claim, or was he really carried away at a chance to name drop when he made the claim? In cases of this sort, usually, the more you look, the less you see.


  1. It is not surprising that a rebuttal came. The only surprising thing is the speed with which it came.

    There were several instances in the past where the government would goof, or get caught with their hands in the cookie jar. They always speedily lie or retrace their step (like the big IT contract to snoop on citizens)

    This news item could be a tip of several profligate icebergs, and exemplifies the typical insensitivity of those in governance.

    Based on precedents, and precedents only, you can bet this retraction ‘get k-leg’.

    I would not extend the benefit of a doubt.

  2. In short, a government official had his representative make the order for the 53 iPhone 5s’s – that’s the long and short of it.

    Amjad Ali speaks English as a first language, so I don’t think he mistakenly mixed up the words government and individual.

  3. It’s the inept, clueless, irresponsible, profligate, insensitive, obnoxious Jonathan government that ordered the vainglorious I phones, not an individual.

    Yet, this is a government that claimed it can’t meet all ASUU demands.

    My concern is that, if the idiotic Jonathan Badluck government ordered 53 gold iPhones for frivolous independence celebrations, it will order new 100 gold iPhones for the needless Centenary jamboree next year.

    We must vote out Jonathan in 2015!

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