Obasanjos letter to Goodluck Jonathan

He said it as it is without fear

Read full text here.

http://www.premiumtimesng.com/docs_download/OBJ-Letter.pdf

 

 

In summary

The former FCT Minister, Nasir El-Rufai has recently posted on his Facebook page some of the reflections on Obasanjo’s letter to Jonathan. Read the full text by the author, Zainab Usman, below [unedited].

Last night, I was distracted from concluding my tribute to Mandela which I started writing a few days ago. This distraction was the lengthy 18-page open letter (PDF) written by former President Olusegun Obasanjo to President Goodluck Jonathan. I took my time to read the letter described as ‘historic’ by Premium Times (which broke the story) in detail. For obvious reasons, this document and its contents have gone viral within the Nigerian online and mainstream media, public discourse and even the international media.

What frightens me deeply about the contents is not the allegations made, but that General Obasanjo (the President’s mentor) made these grave accusations. Disturbingly, the allegations only confirm many rumours that have been going round (most of which I hitherto refused to believe in) such as:

Clannishness and ethnic factionalism in government on the part of the President in favoring his Ijaw kinsmen principally, and his region to the exclusion of other Nigerians;

Deliberate polarisation of Nigerians across a North-South and Muslim-Christian divide to such a level not seen since the Civil War, to further narrow political ambitions;

The President’s tacit support to some of his aggressive kinsmen and known militants who threaten others for disagreeing with him;

Brazen corruption and impunity in government on a scale unrivaled in Nigeria’s post-independence history (the $50 billion unremitted by the NNPC surpasses the $12bn windfall earnings which disappeared under General Babangida. This is just one of numerous cases) — crude oil theft and systematic plunder of the nation’s wealth by powerful people;

Indirect fueling of the Boko Haram insurgency by refusing to take concrete and feasible steps to address it;

Extreme intolerance by the government for any form of dissent by opposition politicians or civil society;

The existence of a clandestine “killer squad of snipers” and a political watch list containing over 1,000 names;

…and many other such allegations.

Where are we heading to in this country!?

Just on Monday this week, we found out about the Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi’s letter alleging that $50 billion went missing under NNPC’s watch between 2012 and 2013. Then on Tuesday, the Speaker of the House of Representatives accused the President of encouraging grand corruption. Then on Wednesday, this scathing letter from Obasanjo was published.

All this is barely two months after the corruption scandal involving the President’s close ally, the Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah. Nothing yet has been done about this.

This systematic plunder of our country’s resources and values is perpetuated against the backdrop of monumental crude oil theft in the Niger-Delta and other numerous scandals.

Is this a country we can thump our chests about? What example are we setting for the rest of Africa? Is this the leadership that will create a strong and united country? What future (or lack of) are we building for our offspring?

True, General Obasanjo is not at all blameless in all this and he is one person whose intentions are always, always, ALWAYS suspect. We vividly recall how his ambition to elongate his tenure beyond the constitutionally mandated two-terms threatened to plunge the country into chaos between 2005 and 2007. Perhaps, as the late Whitney Houston once sung, Jonathan “learnt from the best”.

Yet, given Obasanjo’s close relationship (as a mentor) with President Jonathan, it would be extremely naive and foolish to dismiss these allegations in their entirety.

Say what you want about Obasanjo, but at the very least, his administration established a relatively effective EFCC to fight corruption, established an effective NAFDAC, reformed the Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Customs service and many other institutions. Where are all these institutions today? Where is the EFCC today? How many parallel, overlapping, redundant and toothless committees have been set up to do the work that the EFCC has been obstructed from doing?

I ask this question, where are we heading to?

As a Nigerian, regardless of your religion, ethnicity or region, please ask yourself this sincere question, ‘is this the Nigeria I want, is this a country I am proud of’?

The late Madiba, Nelson Mandela expressed his anger at the behaviour of Nigerian leaders. This is a prime epitome of the leadership Mandela was referring to.

One interesting thing to note is that this is a toned down version of the letter. The original version, according to Thisday newspaper was so harsh that former Head of State General Ibrahim Babangida advised Obasanjo to revise it.
READ MORE:  http://news.naij.com/54185.html

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By mzee(@dirtycity2007) Posted in kenya

One comment on “Obasanjos letter to Goodluck Jonathan

  1. President Goodluck Jonathan has dismissed as “most reckless” and “unjustifiable” a fiercely scathing letter he received from former President Olusegun Obasanjo, in which Mr. Obasanjo accused him of lying, condoning corruption, and leading Nigeria to the brink of collapse.

    A statement by the president’s aide, Reuben Abati, said the allegations by the former president were “baseless and indecorous.”

    The statement said Mr. Jonathan has directed his aides not to respond to the barrage of attacks and allegations from Mr. Obasanjo, listed in an 18-page letter exclusively published by PREMIUM TIMES.

    Mr. Jonathan will personally respond to the charges at the “appropriate time”, the statement said.

    “While many patriotic, objective and well-meaning Nigerians have already condemned the leaked letter as self-serving, hypocritical, malicious, indecent, and very disrespectful of the highest office in the land, President Jonathan has directed that none of his aides or any government official should join issues with Chief Obasanjo over it,” Mr. Abati said.

    “The president himself will, at the appropriate time, offer a full personal response to the most reckless, baseless, unjustifiable and indecorous charges levelled against him and his administration by the former Head of State.”

    In the highly acerbic letter, Mr. Obasanjo laid out a series of allegations against Mr. Jonathan, accusing him of corruption and ineptitude.

    Mr. Obasanjo lamented that Mr. Jonathan had become terribly divisive and clannish, destroying his own party, polarizing the country along regional and religious lines and ridiculing Nigeria in the comity of nations.

    He blamed Mr. Jonathan for the crises tearing the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, apart, and accused him of lacking in personal integrity by consistently lying about his ambition for a new term of office.

    Mr. Obasanjo also tackled Mr. Jonathan for allegedly being clannish. “For you to allow yourself to be “possessed”, so to say, to the exclusion of most of the rest of Nigerians as an “Ijaw man” is a mistake that should never have been allowed to happen. Yes, you have to be born in one part of Nigeria to be Nigerian if not naturalized but the Nigerian President must be above ethnic factionalism. And those who prop you up as of, and for ‘Ijaw nation’ are not your friends genuinely, not friends of Nigeria nor friends of ‘Ijaw nation’ they tout about.

    “To allow or tacitly encourage people of ‘Ijaw nation’ to throw insults on other Nigerians from other parts of the country and threaten fire and brimstone to protect your interest as an Ijaw man is myopic and your not openly quieting them is even more unfortunate.”

    The former president also accused Mr. Jonathan of placing over 1000 Nigerians on political watch list and “training snipers and other armed personnel secretly and clandestinely acquiring weapons to match for political purposes like Abacha and training them where Abacha trained his killers”.

    The former President also called on the National Assembly to rise up and take decisive action over the allegation that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation failed to remit billions of dollars in proceed of crude oil sales to the federation account.

    “This allegation will not fly away by non-action, cover-up, denial or bribing possible investigators,” Mr. Obasanjo told the President. “Please deal with this allegation transparently and let the truth be known.”

    The Senate on Wednesday ordered an investigation. The senate committee on finance is to probe the allegation and make its findings known in seven days.

    The presidency did not respond to any of the issues specifically beyond dismissing them as “provocative and unjustifiable.”

    Mr. Abati said President Jonathan will respond personally. But the statement criticised the leakage of the letter to the media.

    “We however find it highly unbecoming, mischievous and provocative that a letter written by a former Head of State and respected elder statesman to President Jonathan has been deliberately leaked to the mass media in a deplorable effort to impugn the integrity of the president and denigrate his commitment to giving Nigeria the best possible leadership,” the statement said.

    Read the statement by the president’s spokesperson, Reuben Abati, below.

    OBASANJO’S LETTER UNBECOMING, SELF-SERVING AND HIGHLY PROVOCATIVE

    We have noted the publication on several websites today of a letter recently written by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo to President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.

    The Presidency acknowledges that it has indeed received the said letter from Chief Obasanjo.

    We however find it highly unbecoming, mischievous and provocative that a letter written by a former Head of State and respected elder statesman to President Jonathan has been deliberately leaked to the mass media in a deplorable effort to impugn the integrity of the President and denigrate his commitment to giving Nigeria the best possible leadership.

    While many patriotic, objective and well-meaning Nigerians have already condemned the leaked letter as self-serving, hypocritical, malicious, indecent, and very disrespectful of the highest office in the land, President Jonathan has directed that none of his aides or any government official should join issues with Chief Obasanjo over it.

    The President himself will, at the appropriate time, offer a full personal response to the most reckless, baseless, unjustifiable and indecorous charges levied against him and his administration by the former Head of State.

    Reuben Abati

    Special Adviser to the President

    (Media & Publicity)

    http://premiumtimesng.com/news/151332-angry-jonathan-replies-obasanjo-says-letter-self-serving-provocative.html

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