ISSUES | Obasanjo and the Nation: This Time, Selective Amnesia is Not an Option – By Kennedy Emetulu
In the next few days, I will be discussing former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s public letter to President Muhammadu Buhari. I don’t think any Nigerian who knows me doubts that I do not want President Buhari reelected if he presents himself for reelection. In fact, I have already written an open letter to him asking him to resign and go rest shortly after he returned from his last medical treatment abroad. But, apart from the normal human feeling, one has for someone that advanced in age and struggling with his or her health, Buhari is ideologically not my cup of tea. He should not have been elected in the first place and having governed for almost three years now, we all can see what a monumental mistake we made by electing him.
I know there are people like Obasanjo who would proclaim that they had no choice but to elect Buhari as far as former President Goodluck Jonathan was the other option, but I think that thinking is patently false and dishonest, especially now that we have seen clearly what Buhari represents in his latest incarnation as a democratic president. Those who are saying it, including Obasanjo, know it’s false, but this is their way of justifying their ill-advised decision to support Buhari, knowing his antecedents. I mean, I would accept their reason if they had no idea who Buhari was or what he is capable of, but how can any matured adult who lived through the 20 months of the Buhari military dictatorship think he is suitable to lead a fledgling democracy? Of course, we had many who felt he was okay, but it was not a genuine or informed feeling for Nigeria’s well-being; in most cases, especially amongst the elite, it was a feeling based on selfishness and raw quest and, in some cases, greed for power.
Anyway, here we are again with the notorious letter writer striking against Buhari this time. Since he’s left office, Obasanjo has made himself by hook or by crook the installer of all our presidents against all tenets of democracy and he is very proud to let us know this. He installed Umaru Yar’Adua via his ‘Do or Die’ 2007 election, but soon fell out with him when Yar’Adua wouldn’t allow him to run his government and PDP from Ota and Abeokuta. Fate brought Jonathan forward and the Nigerian people installed him against the wishes of the Yar’Adua cabal and Obasanjo, the clear-eyed opportunist, adopted him again as his choice.
But precisely for reasons, he fell out with Yar’Adua, he fell out with Jonathan too. And then Bola Tinubu and his APC crowd trooped to Abeokuta to go ask him to be their ‘navigator’ in their bid to remove Jonathan. Of course, he jumped at the opportunity and sold their totally unsuitable candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, a man Obasanjo first brought into the Federal Government as a Federal Commissioner under his military regime in March 1976 and who left in a hail of controversy over a missing N2.8 billion (more than $3 billion dollars at the time) in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources which he headed, as the answer to our national problem.
This man who has showed he is totally unfit to be the leader of our country when he presided over the nation for 20 horrid months as a military dictator and who for the next thirty years after that had exhibited so much parochialism and hatred for Nigerians and our national institutions at all levels was Obasanjo’s happy choice for our nation. He went about campaigning for him and celebrated his win like some new dawn for the nation. For almost three years now, the man has acted true to type and Obasanjo and his coterie of kingmakers have been shuttling to and from Aso Rock grinning from ear to ear as our nation is being buried by bad governance and sheer human wickedness in high places. Then, suddenly, now that we have waited patiently to express ourselves democratically in the next presidential election coming up next year, Obasanjo jumps to the public podium with his accursed letter, preaching good governance to us and lambasting Buhari, his own very creation, all because he’s cooked up some new nation-destroying agenda to entice us as usual!
Here’s the thing, for whatever reason Obasanjo has chosen to fall out with Buhari, it should be no concern to any right-thinking Nigerian. Nobody should be preaching ‘listen to the message, forget the messenger’ or ‘Obasanjo has earned the right to speak forthrightly about national affairs’ or ‘he has a right to his own view just as you have a right to yours’ blah blah blah! When I say nobody should be preaching these I’m not saying nobody should actually not preach it because they already are preaching it! So, yeah, all that is perfectly fine. But, what I’m saying is that for any clearheaded Nigerian who hasn’t been snoozing off during important national history lessons, this is not the time to forget that our real starting point must be that Obasanjo is no national conscience. He’s an incubus who’s been the main architect of the failure of the Fourth Republic. He’s the man who fully invested in the failure he and his ilk have visited upon us these past 42 years and more tellingly, for the past 19 years. His plot is definitely one against democracy. I mean, when he calls on Nigerians to abandon the PDP and the APC and join him on the nebulous path of Coalition for Nigeria, which he says need not be a political party, that should ring alarm bells in the head of all thinking Nigerians. What does he want? That we should leave the democratic structures we have painfully built on the blood of patriots to follow him into some dark alley where he, the failed navigator, would once again lead us to our sure doom as mass sacrifice to his greed for power? What is wrong with PDP and APC? Are they not composed of Nigerians? If Obasanjo respects democracy and party politics, why did he make a show of tearing up his PDP card? If he had issues with certain PDP leaders, how about the millions of Nigerians who were and still are ordinary members? What respect did he show to them when he was throwing his toys out of the pram, playing the spoiler, so another party can win the election? Obasanjo declared himself above partisan politics, but meanwhile, it was his negative partisanship that was the signature Buhari needed to get into Aso Rock! No one begged him to return to party politics, so why is he now coming to disrupt our democratic life through the back door with his hues and cries? Who is investing in his hypocrisy this time?
We cannot allow a criminal like Obasanjo be our political or moral guide in 2019. If you are someone fifty-seven or below and of voting age, think deeply about what I’m saying here and remove the curse of Obasanjo from your generation by distancing yourself and your family from his new scheme! He might have his issues with Buhari, but we are not joining him! We have our plans for Buhari at the ballot box and it does not involve Obasanjo and the national and foreign vampires and anti-democratic forces behind him. Reject Obasanjo! Reject Buhari! Keep faith with the democratic process to finally give us the leader we want! Trust your PVC, it’s your weapon in 2019!
Nigerians who truly love Nigeria and Nigerians must know that whatever Obasanjo is proposing to us and what Buhari has to offer from here on are BOTH not good for our country and us. Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty, so it’s time Nigerians of every political persuasion, of every political party, resist Obasanjo and those beating the drum he’s dancing to in public now. He is not and cannot be the moral standard-bearer for our nation because he is an awful and wicked leader like the Buhari he is excoriating. There is nothing in his message that is wholesome, there’s nothing he’s said that we do not already know; he’s just an opportunist looking for a last hurray to install his choice again as our leader in 2019. No, we must reject him!
The PDP and the APC and all other political parties must not be distracted. They are the guardians of our democracy and they must resist Obasanjo and his angels from hell. No one should give him any respect because the man does not respect Nigeria! Enough of his destabilization schemes! Whoever Obasanjo is working for, foreign and Nigerian must know that Nigerians have wised up to his antics. Let him at 80 years of age go and rest too! Enough of him around our political life like a bad smell! Let him go hide away and quietly be giving advice to upcoming leaders if they consult him and if he really has anything to say.
In 2019, Nigerians will get on with the vote. Those of us who want Buhari out will pit our democratic wits against those who want him reelected and as far as the election is free and fair, we will accept the result and move on. The nation is bigger than all of us! We are not going to be diverted by an Obasanjo destabilization agenda in the name of some fake Coalition for Nigeria! Not in our name! If Obasanjo is interested in politics, let him join a political party and support that party’s candidate or register his so-called Coalition for Nigeria and produce a candidate. Buhari has a right to seek reelection and even if he doesn’t exercise that right, it should not be because some old devious soldier shouted against him on a national pulpit. In Nigeria and this world we live in, Obasanjo does not possess a bigger moral leverage than Buhari, they are made of the same cloth and decent Nigerians want none of them! Between them, they’ve caused us enough grief already! Enough is enough!
To start off our discussion in earnest, I am taking us back to the letter Obasanjo wrote to President Goodluck Jonathan. It’s important we go back and analyze that notorious letter to understand the present one to Buhari because between both, we can get a clearer insight into Obasanjo’s dark mind. In my view at the time, Jonathan mismanaged the opportunity because that was an opportunity he had to silence Obasanjo forever. But he thought playing the respectful son was the best thing, so Obasanjo’s lies in that letter stuck to him like a leech and he went on to lose the election, which was the reason Obasanjo deployed that letter in the first place. Today, Obasanjo is stomping on a fake moral high ground, claiming his letter chastised Jonathan who has now seen the light, but who he will not allow or he will not support to be president again, even as he would work with him in other capacities. Of course, at the time, Jonathan had many idiots advising him. Even when patriotic citizens who felt he should robustly respond to Obasanjo were asking him to do so and offering ideas, Jonathan demurred. I was one of such persons. In fact, after consultations, I actually wrote a draft response I wanted President Jonathan to largely adopt as a response to Obasanjo at the time, but, as I said, he had other ideas coming from the clowns who were advising him at the time. In the end, he published what was termed a response, but which really turned out to be a half-hearted attack and an unconfident response that further deified Obasanjo. Refresh your mind by calmly rereading Obasanjo’s letter and Jonathan’s response in the links below:
As I said, before Jonathan made the above response, I proposed a draft response that never made it to public space because he chose to go another way (with his eventual response above). But today, I’m going to post that draft I made for him publicly. I am doing so for Nigerians to understand fully what Obasanjo is doing with his latest letter to Buhari because they are all connected to our future that he is once again planning to destroy. The Ebora Owu is an evilly complicated human being who thinks himself the smartest cookie ever to walk the earth, so he has no scruples taking us on another wild goose chase, but that is if we make our nation and ourselves available. Sure, I’m not a Buhari supporter, but there’s a lot he and his supporters must learn from that Jonathan episode. I see that Lai Mohammed has responded to Obasanjo in a seemingly courteous way (while leaving some other persons and organizations with links to the government to go dirty on Obasanjo), but really saying nothing apart from the usual lies about Buhari’s achievements. To be honest, it’s not very different from Jonathan’s approach, except that Lai Mohammed responded on behalf of the government, rather than Buhari doing so directly and he (Lai Mohammed) addressed his response to Nigerians, rather than to Obasanjo directly. Otherwise, both are just the same rehash of what they termed their achievements as if they are schoolboys reporting what they have done to a headmaster! Remarkably, the Lai Mohammed response mostly avoided addressing the issues raised by Obasanjo, including conveniently misrepresenting some of Obasanjo’s positions. But, there’s no surprise there, we’re talking the one and only Lai Mohammed, the Chemical Ali of our time!
At any rate, I do not think that Lai Mohammed’s piece is winning anybody over to Buhari’s side that is not already on that side now. Pretending to be respectful to someone whose objective is to destabilize our democracy and bring down your government is another brand of hypocrisy, but there is no surprise there. Lai Mohammed and his boss are creations of Obasanjo. He helped bring them to the government, so they know themselves. They are all fellow destroyers of Nigeria, so they can be smiling to each other publicly while they viciously suck each other’s blood in the dark. They know that their core isn’t something that can appeal to true Nigerian patriots, so they need to pretentiously tiptoe around their Baba, their disrobed god. So, let them get on with their handbagging, Nigerians should ignore both.
The lesson for true Nigerians is obvious. We cannot allow a criminal like Obasanjo be our political or moral guide in 2019. If you are someone fifty-seven or below and of voting age, think deeply about what I’m saying here and remove the curse of Obasanjo from your generation by distancing yourself and your family from his new scheme! He might have his issues with Buhari, but we are not joining him! We have our plans for Buhari at the ballot box and it does not involve Obasanjo and the national and foreign vampires and anti-democratic forces behind him. Reject Obasanjo! Reject Buhari! Keep faith with the democratic process to finally give us the leader we want! Trust your PVC, it’s your weapon in 2019!
Follow us on Twitter at @thesignalng
Copyright 2018 SIGNAL. Permission to use portions of this article is granted provided appropriate credits are given to www.signalng.com and other relevant sources.