Here are 17 quotes from the statement issued by former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Tuesday criticising the performance of President Muhammadu Buhar1.
1. State Of The Nation
“The lice of poor performance in government – poverty, insecurity, poor economic management, nepotism, gross dereliction of duty, condonation of misdeed.
If not outright encouragement of it, lack of progress and hope for the future, lack of national cohesion and poor management of internal political dynamics and widening inequality – are very much with us today.”
“The situation that made Nigerians to vote massively to get my brother Jonathan off the horse is playing itself out again.”
2. Nigeria’s Role In Africa
“For Africa to move forward, Nigeria must be one of the anchor countries, if not the leading anchor country. It means that Nigeria must be good at home to be good outside.
No doubt, our situation in the last decade or so had shown that we are not good enough at home; hence we are invariably absent at the table that we should be abroad.”
3. Likely Consequence Of His Statement
“I know that praise-singers and hired attackers may be raised up against me for verbal or even physical attack but if I can withstand undeserved imprisonment and was ready to shed my blood by standing for Nigeria, I will consider no sacrifice too great to make for the good of Nigeria at any time.”
4. Buhari’s Weakness
“I knew President Buhari before he became President and said that he is weak in the knowledge and understanding of the economy but I thought that he could make use of good Nigerians in that area that could help.”
“I know his weakness in understanding and playing in the foreign affairs sector and again, there are many Nigerians that could be used in that area as well.”
5. Corruption Allegations Against Members Of Presidency
“There were serious allegations of round-tripping against some inner caucus of the Presidency which would seem to have been condoned.
I wonder if such actions do not amount to corruption and financial crime, then what is it? Culture of condonation and turning blind eye will cover up rather than clean up.”
6. Anti-Corruption Fight
“I thought President Buhari would fight corruption and insurgency and he must be given some credit for his achievement so far in these two areas although it is not yet uhuru!”
7. Herdsmen-Farmers Crisis
“The herdsmen/crop farmers issue is being wittingly or unwittingly allowed to turn sour and messy.
It is no credit to the Federal Government that the herdsmen rampage continues with careless abandon and without finding an effective solution to it.”
“The issue of herdsmen/crop farmers dichotomy should not be left on the political platform of blame game; the Federal Government must take the lead in bringing about solution that protects life and properties of herdsmen and crop farmers alike and for them to live amicably in the same community.”
8. Governors’ Endorsement Of Buhari
“It is a sad symptom of insensitivity and callousness that some Governors, a day after 73 victims were being buried in a mass grave in Benue State without condolence, were jubilantly endorsing President Buhari for a second term! The timing was most unfortunate.”
9. Three Areas He Feels Buhari Failed
“One is nepotic deployment bordering on clannishness and inability to bring discipline to bear on errant members of his nepotic court.
This has grave consequences on performance of his government to the detriment of the nation. It would appear that national interest was being sacrificed on the altar of nepotic interest.”
“The second is his poor understanding of the dynamics of internal politics. This has led to wittingly or unwittingly making the nation more divided and inequality has widened and become more pronounced. It also has effect on general national security.”
“The third is passing the buck. For instance, blaming the Governor of the Central Bank for devaluation of the naira by 70% or so and blaming past governments for it, is to say the least, not accepting one’s own responsibility.
Let nobody deceive us, economy feeds on politics and because our politics is depressing, our economy is even more depressing today.”
10. The Case Of Maina
“What does one make of a case like that of Maina: collusion, condonation, ineptitude, incompetence, dereliction of responsibility or kinship and friendship on the part of those who should have taken visible and deterrent disciplinary action?
How many similar cases are buried, ignored or covered up and not yet in the glare of the media and the public?”
11. Buhari’s Health, Pushing His Luck
“…Whatever may be the state of President Buhari’s health today, he should neither over-push his luck nor over-tax the patience and tolerance of Nigerians for him…”
12. A Dignified Exit From Power
President Buhari needs a dignified and honourable dismount from the horse. He needs to have time to reflect, refurbish physically and recoup and after appropriate rest, once again, join the stock of Nigerian leaders whose experience, influence, wisdom and outreach can be deployed on the sideline for the good of the country.
His place in history is already assured.
13. ‘Wobbling’ APC And PDP
“I have had occasion in the past to say that the two main political parties – APC and PDP – were wobbling.
I must reiterate that nothing has happened to convince me otherwise. If anything, I am reinforced in my conviction.”
14. Déjà Vu
I believe the situation we are in today is akin to what and where we were in at the beginning of this democratic dispensation in 1999. The nation was tottering.
People became hopeless and saw no bright future in the horizon.
“Let the administration and its political party platform agree with the rest of us that what they have done and what they are capable of doing is not good enough for us.
To ask them to give more will be unrealistic and will only sentence Nigeria to a prison term of four years if not destroy it beyond the possibility of an early recovery and substantial growth.”
16. A Word For Citizens…
“If leadership fails, citizens must not fail and there lies the beauty and importance of democracy.
We are challenged by the current situation; we must neither adopt spirit of cowardice nor timidity let alone impotence.”
17. A Movement To Save The Day
“We need a Coalition for Nigeria, CN. Such a Movement at this juncture needs not be a political party but one to which all well-meaning Nigerians can belong.
That Movement must be a coalition for democracy, good governance, social and economic well-being and progress.
Coalition to salvage and redeem our country. You can count me with such a Movement.”