President Addo, Barack Obama, and Other Leaders Caught Plagiarising

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What was supposed to be a moment of great triumph for Ghana’s new president, Akufo Nana Addo ended up in embarrassment? This is mostly due to the plagiarism drama that surrounded the president’s inaugural speech.

The president made use of speeches from former America’s presidents, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush without attributing.

Following the loud lashing it has attracted, BuzzGhana takes a look at some prominent people and leaders caught plagiarising.

 

Barack Obama

Obama may go down in history as one of the greatest orators ever. Not minding this, the US president was caught more than once plagiarising. In 20008 during his campaign speech, Mr Obama made use of some part of a speech identical to that of the former Governor of  Massachusetts Deval Patrick.

While Obama in 2008 said:

Don’t tell me words don’t matter! ‘I have a dream.’ Just words. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’ Just words. ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself.’ Just words, just speeches,

Patrick in 2006 said:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal’-just words. Just words. ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself’-just words. ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country’-just words. ‘I have a dream’-just words.

Muhammadu Buhari

Leaders caught Plagiarising
Muhammadu Buhari (Nigerian President)

Nigeria’s president is one of those world leaders caught plagiarising more than once. The most popular, however, was during a speech in September 2016 when he made a speech that drew so much from Obama’s 2008 victory speech.

Buhari in 2016 said:

We must resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship, pettiness and immaturity that have poisoned our country for so long. Let us summon a new spirit of responsibility, spirit of service, of patriotism and sacrifice, Let us all resolve to pitch in and work hard and look after, not only ourselves but one another.

Barack Obama in 2008 said:

Let’s resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism, of responsibility, where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves but each other.

Joe Biden

Leaders Caught Plagiarising
Joe Biden (US Vice-President)

While campaigning for the 1988 presidential elections of America in 1987, the outgoing Vice president of America, Joe Biden, who was a candidate in the elections was caught plagiarising a speech delivered by British Labour Party’s Neil Kinnock four months prior.

The outcome of this was Biden forced to withdraw from the race.

While Biden in 1987 said:



I started thinking as I was coming over here, why is it that Joe Biden is the first in his family ever to go to a university? [Pointing to his wife in the audience:] Why is it that my wife who is sitting out there in the audience is the first in her family to ever go to college? Is it because our fathers and mothers were not bright? Is it because I’m the first Biden in a thousand generations to get a college and a graduate degree that I was smarter than the rest?

Kinnock said:

Why am I the first Kinnock in a thousand generations to be able to get to university? [Pointing to his wife in the audience:] Why is Glenys the first woman in her family in a thousand generations to be able to get to university? Was it because all our predecessors were thick?

See Also: Should the Speech Writers Be Pardoned Or Sanctioned? Find Out All About Nana Addo’s Speech Gaffe

 

Melania Trump

During her first major speech to the Nation as her husband campaigned to rule the US in 2016, the incoming first lady delivered a speech that drew straight from a speech delivered by Michelle Obama at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

Video Clip below (From CNN)

Mrs Trump said:

From a young age, my parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say and keep your promise; that you treat people with respect… we want our children in this nation to know that the only limit to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.

Mrs Obama in 2008 said:

 You work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say you’re going to do; that you treat people with dignity and respect… We want our children,  and all children in this nation to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.

Vladimir Putin

While the Russian president is not one of those leaders caught plagiarising in speeches, he was said to have plagiarised his economics dissertation. According to researchers from the Brookings Institute, Putin stole 16 out of the 20 pages from a paper published by the University of Pittsburgh 20 years earlier.

Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin (Russian President)

 

Ben Carson

I know you didn’t expect to see Carson among leaders caught plagiarising, but like Putin, he was said to have plagiarised in his book, “America the Beautiful.” The surgeon turned politician was said to have drawn some things in the 2012 book from other books as well as other online materials.

“I attempted to appropriately cite and acknowledge all sources in America the Beautiful, but inadvertently missed some. I apologise, and I am working with my editors to rectify the situation,” Carson said in a statement provided to CNN.

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