Obasanjo Advices Politicians At Calabar Book Presentation

Former president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo gave an advise in Calabar, Cross River State to politicians that politics should not be about life and death.

Obasanjo gave the advice in Calabar, Cross River State at the public presentation of a book titled: Stepping Forward with Uti J.D. Agba, written by Goddy Jedy-Agba and Mathias Okoi-Uyouyo.

He said, “Politics should not be about life and death. If you cannot be the chief servant, you can be the assistant chief servant. This is because the chief servant cannot do it on his own. He has to work with others.”

The former president, who was the special guest of honour, said politicians who failed to win election could help those who won to succeed. He emphasized on the need for all to work together for the development of the people. In his comment, Cross River State Governor, Prof Ben Ayade, said politicians who could not be in power to serve should support those in power.

“Power is like the wind which blows away. In using power, one must do so with the fear of God,” Ayade said.

The governor launched the book for N5m on behalf of the state government and another N5m on behalf of himself.

One of the authors Mr Goddy Jedy Agba said Cross Riverians were one people, hence the need for all irrespective of their background to work towards the development of the state.

He expressed gratitude to all who made the event a success.

Uti J.D. Agba, the Paramount Ruler of Obudu in Cross River State is the longest-serving monarch in Africa and the second longest serving monarch in the world after the Queen of England, having been on the throne for 58 years.

The book was reviewed by Prof Kalu Uka of the University of Uyo.

Dignitaries who graced the occasion included the Etsu Nupe of Nupe Kingdom, Alhaji Dr Yahaya Abubakar; Uti J.D Agba; the Obong of Calabar, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu V; former Cross River State Governor Liyel Imoke; and Senator John Owan Enoh; Special Adviser to the President on Prosecution, Mr Okoi Obono Obla, among others.

Obasanjo Secures United Nations Appointment

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has been appointed into the United Nations (UN) High-Level Advisory Board on Mediation along with 17 other current and former global leaders.

UN Secretary-General, Antonio Gutierrez in a statement announced the establishment of the board, which he explained would advise him on mediation initiatives and back specific mediation efforts around the world.

Gutierrez said the Board was established as part of the “surge in diplomacy for peace” which he has consistently advocated.

In the announcement of the appointments, UN described the former Nigerian President as one of the most distinguished elder statesmen of Africa.

The statement reads, “He served as President of the Republic of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007, and before that as the Head of the Federal Military Government of Nigeria and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces from 1976 to 1979. Over his long career, Mr. Obasanjo has been involved in numerous international mediation efforts, including in Angola, Burundi, Mozambique, Namibia and South Africa.

“In 2008 he was appointed the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on the Great Lakes region.”

Also appointed into the board are President Michelle Bachelet (Chile) who is serving her second non-consecutive term as president; Radhika Coomaraswamy (Sri Lanka); a 2011 Nobel Peace Laureate, Leymah Gbowee (Liberia); Jean-Marie Guéhenno (France), former President of Finland, Tarja Halonen (Finland); David Harland (New Zealand), Noeleen Heyzer (Singapore), and Nasser Judeh (Jordan).

Others are Ramtane Lamamra (Algeria), Graça Machel (Mozambique), Asha-Rose Migiro (Tanzania), Raden Mohammad and Marty Muliana Natalegawa (Indonesia), Roza Otunbayeva (Kyrgyzstan), Michèle Pierre-Louis (Haiti), José Manuel Ramos-Horta (Timor-Leste), Gert Rosenthal (Guatemala) and Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby (United Kingdom).

Obasanjo, NANS Call On Buhari To Punish Officials Involved In Maina’s Recall

The last may not have been heard about the controversy surrounding reinstatement of fugitive former pension boss, Abdulrasheed Maina, as Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has called on President Muhammodu Buhari to sanction those behind the secret returned into the civil service.

Obasanjo said Mr. Maina’s secret reinstatement was not consistent with President Muhammadu Buhari’s avowed war on corruption.

This call was made by the former president while speaking at the 2017 Foundation Day Public Lecture titled: “Corruption and the Challenges of the African Child” on Saturday in Ibadan.

He also warned Mr. Buhari that there must not be any “sacred cows” in the fight against corruption.

“Corruption must be punished, and must be seen to be punished.

“Any accomplice in corruption and cover-up and any failure to punish must also earn punishment.

“We cannot afford to have sacred cows in the fight against corruption. The Maina saga should never have been allowed to occur. It is not in tandem with the fight against corruption,” Mr. Obasanjo said.

Also reacting, the National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS asked the federal government to ‘swiftly with unrestrained alacrity’ suspend all heads of commission and ministries complicit in the secret reinstatement.

The union warned that it will go on nationwide protest if its demands are not met within seven days.

“The Head of the Service of the Federation as well as the Chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission deserves nothing but immediate suspension from office and probe for allowing themselves to be caught in this cobweb of professional misconduct,” Chinonso Obasi, the president of the union said In a statement on Sunday.

Mr. Maina was in 2013 dismissed by the Federal Civil Service Commission for absconding from office. He is accused of leading massive corruption of about N2 billion when he served as chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team.

Afterwards, he turned fugitive, as the Police and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission sought his arrest.

Since the news of his recall broke, Mr. Maina has gone back into hiding. Although his recall has been rescinded by President Buhari, the president is yet to act on a report by the Head of Service on how the fugitive was recalled into the civil service.

The Nigerian senate last week asked Mr. Buhari to bring those behind the reinstatement to book without further delay.

Source: Premium Times

Obasanjo Fires Shagari Over Rice Production

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday speaking as chief launcher at the global unveiling of Okun Rice at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library in Abeokuta, Ogun State blasted Alhaji Shehu Shagari for scuttling the progress made by the country to be self- sufficient in rice production.

 

He recalled that in 1979 when he handed over power as military Head of State, the country was almost achieving self- sufficiency in the production, adding that inconsistent in policies by his successor who later set up a committee on the importation of rice, stifled the laudable move.

 

Obasanjo noted that the shift in policy focus served as a disincentive to farmers who were sent packing as the imported bags of rice began to arrive. He commended the promoter of the new product, Biodun Onalaja, for rekindling the hope of the country at achieving self-sufficiency in rice production and ensuring food security for the nation.

 

God Forbid, I’ll Never Return To PDP – Obasanjo

The former President Olusegun Obasanjo has again reaffirmed his stand that he is done with Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and does not have plan to return to the party.

This was revealed yesterday during the visit of PDP bigwigs to Obasanjo in Abeokuta led by the party’s National Caretaker Chairman, Sen Ahmed Makarfi, ostensibly to seek his help in rebuilding and rejuvenating the crisis-ridden party.

The meeting which was held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library in Abeokuta had planned to woo the former leader to PDP fold but met a brick wall by Obasanjo’s rejection to join the party.

Obasanjo, it was learnt, told the former Kaduna State Governor that he was done with PDP and would not want to reverse himself on a decision long taken about the party.

Obasanjo, who was elected President twice on the ticket of PDP and later became the party’s Board of Trustees Chairman, in the build-up to the 2015 general elections, publicly tore his PDP membership card and quit partisan politics to become an elder statesman.

At the conclusion of the private discussion yesterday, the ex-president, who barred Makarfi from speaking to reporters, said it was a meeting of two former colleagues.

Obasanjo added that he told his guest that he was “no longer of the PDP, having quit partisan politics.

He said jokingly: “This is two colleagues’ meeting, two colleagues before before. When I was the President, chairman was a governor; two colleagues before before.

“I have told the chairman that I was in PDP before but not now. God forbid, say when a dog vomits, it will go back to eat its vomit, no.  I have said no partisan politics for me again and not partisan politics. But Nigeria is my passion until death do us part and anything that concerns Nigeria; the good of Nigeria, you will see my involvement.

“So, the chairman has come to greet me and ‘I greet am’, and now that we’ve greeted ourselves, chairman will be going. You gentlemen and ladies of the press, you can now go, leave the chairman alone.”

Obasanjo added: “I have said publicly before and I will say it again. For our democracy to thrive and continue to be strong, we need strong party in government and strong party in the opposition.

“It has to be that way, otherwise party in government will get away with impunity and that is not good for democracy.”

But Makarfi, after leaving Obasanjo, shunned the party’s state secretariat on Ibrahim Babangida Boulevard, Abeokuta – about 250 metres away from OOPL, where he met the ex-president.

Factional PDP state chairman Adebayo Dayo and hundreds of others that had massed up at the secretariat to welcome him to Ogun State were disappointed.

Adebayo told reporters that they had mobilised PDP members from across the state’s 20 local government areas to receive Makarfi and regretted that they could not see the caretaker chairman throughout his stay in Abeokuta.

He vowed never to recognise Makarfi as PDP leader for treating him and hordes of other party members with contempt.

Just In: Makarfi, Obasanjo In Closed Door Meeting

The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party’s caretaker committee, Sen. Ahmed Markafi and former Nigeria President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo are presently in closed-door meeting in Abeokuta.

The meeting which is holding at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library had in attendant Makarfi, Osun state caretaker chairman, Isola Sarafa among other PDP chieftain.

Mr. Markafi later went into a private meeting with Chief Obasanjo, at the section of the library.

 

After the closed-door meeting between the former president and Sen. Makarfi, those who accompanied Markafi were invited into another meeting that lasted for about 25 minutes.

Details later……..

I Don’t Believe In True Federalism, Says Obasanjo

Former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo has said that those agitating for true federalism are ignorant of the concept.

Obasanjo who made this statement during a tour to promote his new book, ‘Making Africa Work’, told his interviewers: “I don’t believe in true federalism. What is true federalism?”

“Why are they (the states) not accountable? What powers do they not have? They have power.

“In fact, state governors are more powerful than the president. That’s the truth.

“(So) if anybody tells you they want devolution or true federalism, he doesn’t know what he is talking.”

Obasanjo insisted that some of those agitating for the sovereign state of Biafra do not know what the (Biafra) struggle is all about.

He, however, admitted that “the government’s military intervention – in the secessionist agitation – have “made things worse”.

“All youth in Nigeria have legitimate reasons to feel frustrated and angry,” he said.

“The protesters don’t even know what the struggle is all about, but if it gives them false hope, why not hang onto it?

“Let the elders handle it (the secessionist agitations) or ignore it until it loses momentum. There are elders in any community who are still respected… After all, they’re their fathers and mothers, grandfathers and grandmothers, and can still be used effectively.”

He also said President Muhammadu Buhari has not done “enough” in the area of youth employment, especially with regards to sustainability.

“Is Buhari doing enough about it (youth employment)? I don’t believe he is. Can he do enough about it? Of course he can.

“He (Buhari) has tried to keep on going in the area of agribusiness, but not enough. It is not yet enough to prepare the ground for uninhibited growth of the economy, which we need.

“Youth empowerment, skill acquisition and youth employment – education must be able to do that. If you do that, the ticking bomb of possible youth explosion out of restiveness and anger will subside.”

 

Falana To Obasanjo, Jonathan: Your Advice to Buhari Over IPOB Is Needless

A human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has criticized two former presidents, Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan, over their advice to President Muhammadu Buhari on how to tackle the tensions caused by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

Falana called on Obasanjo to apologise to Nigerians over the deployment of the military, to invade communities under his administration.

Obasanjo had said: “I don’t see anything wrong in that (Buhari meeting with Kanu). I would not object to that; if anything, I would encourage it. I would want to meet Kanu myself and talk to people like him; people of his age and ask, ‘What are your worries?”

Reacting, the legal luminary said: “In calling for a dialogue between President Buhari and Mr. Kanu, former President Obasanjo ought to have apologised publicly for the military invasions of Odi in Bayelsa State and Zaki Biam in Benue State ordered by him.

“The basis of the call should have been explained since President Obasanjo charged Niger Delta militants, leaders of ethnic militias and separatist movements with treason, which led to their prolonged detention in prison custody.

“Convinced that former President Obasanjo has realised that the criminalisation of such agitation did not achieve its objective, his suggestion for a dialogue should be seriously considered by President Buhari and the South-East governors.”

The Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) also faulted Jonathan, for calling for a meeting of the Council of State, to resolve the crisis caused by the secessionist group.

“For goodness sake, why was such a meeting not called before soldiers were deployed in the Niger Delta to deal with militants? Did President Jonathan call any meeting before deploying soldiers all over the country for the 2015 general elections in defiance of the judgments of the Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal?

“Instead of suggesting irrelevant meetings, the root causes of the increasing loss of faith in the corporate existence of Nigeria by unemployed youths and other poverty-stricken people should be urgently addressed by the ruling class.

“As a matter of urgency, the underdevelopment of the nation caused by the mindless corruption and criminal diversion of public funds by unpatriotic public officers on our hapless people should be addressed,” he added.

 

Negotiate With Kanu, Obasanjo Tells Buhari

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has advised President Muhammadu Buhari during an interview with Newsweek Magazine, to dialogue with the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, to curb the secessionist agitations instead of the deployment of soldiers in the South-East.

Obasanjo said “I don’t see anything wrong in that (Buhari meeting with Kanu). I would not object to that; if anything, I would encourage it. I would want to meet Kanu myself and talk to people like him, people of his age, (and ask) ‘What are your worries?’ Not only from the South-East but from all parts of Nigeria.”

Obasanjo, who led the final offensive that brought the civil war to an end in 1970, said he had seen too many wars and it was time for Nigeria to move on. He said, “Those who fought in the war in Biafra will not want to fight any other war. I fought in that war and it was an unfortunate war and I said I had fought one war too many in Nigeria; I don’t want to see another.

“The heavy boot is not the solution. I believe also whatever may be the frustration of any youth in any part of Nigeria; I believe secession is not the solution.”

He however stated the need to “satisfy the youth in job creation, in wealth creation, in giving them a better, fulfilled life, in giving them hope for the future. There’s no easy way out”.

Fani-Kayode Speaks On Restructuring, Says Obasanjo Position Is In Minority

By Toba Ajisafe

 

 

A former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, has described former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo as a small minority to condemned ‘Restructuring’

 

Kayode who was among leaders that attended Yoruba Summit on Restructuring held in Ibadan said though he respects the former president but against his position on restructuring of Nigeria.

 

Kayode who stated this on a radio programme monitored by OSUN DEFENDER reporter in Osogbo on Friday said restructuring is panacea to many problems facing the country.

 

According to him, “Many of us believed that if that is not done, this country will break up and what will happen is that the cry for establishment of Oduduwa Republic will far more in pronouncement. This can’t be stopped unless we dissolve power from the central, it will erode the thought that some are slaves while others are kings.

 

He said “We are talking about the emancipation of the Yoruba nation, we (Yorubas) has been cheated humiliated, jailed and insulted by the same people over and over again. Those people killed Awolowo, Abiola and they incarcerated Obasanjo; when he even became the President, they push Sharia law on him, same people established Boko Haram, they turn the Vice President to coordinator when the president was not around because they don’t believe in anybody in the country, they believe their own Nigeria.

 

“We need to have a self-autonomy and we must be emancipated as people so that we can be able to achieve our full potential and that is why we are fighting for, doing it constitutionally, lawful, reasonable and rational manner and agitate for restructuring of the federation.

 

He said, “What we resolved in the communiqué yesterday as Yoruba nation is that we need to have restructuring based on regional line.

 

“Let us have the control of our destiny, move our people forward to greater height. Nigeria as a country we are greater than many nations in the world.

 

“Yoruba nation has taken a position on restructuring because we don’t have federation in Nigeria

 

However, Fani-Kayode condemned Federal Government on the said war declared on hate speeches.

 

He alleged that, All Progressives Congress is the architect of ‘hate speeches in Nigeria, they convened against former president, Goodluck Jonathan by engaging spite words against him.

 

“The blood that is running in their vein, preaches hatred.

 

They wanted to suppress freedom of speech by declaring war on ‘hate speeches. If they want to stop hate speeches the need to lead by example and we all going to start from there. He noted.

 

FUNABB Gets Diabetes Center As Obasanjo Confirms Effectiveness Of Herbs

The Board of Trustees, Centre for the Advancement of Research in Diabetes in Nigeria, has concluded plans to establish a diabetes research centre at the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB).

The centre, according to the Head, Directorate of Public Relations of the institution, Emi’ Alawode, when operational, would foster research and the use of medicinal plants for the benefit of diabetic patients; both in Nigeria and Africa.

The Grand Patron of the Centre and former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo made the disclosure during a working visit of the Board of Trustees to the land allocated for the centre by FUNAAB.

Obasanjo who is also an Honorary Awardee of the University recalled what brought about the idea of establishing the centre, stating that he believed Nigeria had not done enough in the area of research for medicinal plants and diabetic patients.

The former President confirmed the efficacy and effectiveness of herbal medicines and called on stakeholders and practitioners to promote its cause through research and collaboration.

In his view, pharmaceutical companies have not extracted up to 20 percent of needed “active ingredients” in roots and herbs, to cure ailments and diseases, while confirming that China and South Africa had made appreciable progress in the field.

The Chairman, Board of Trustees of the centre, Emeritus Professor Oladipupo Akinkugbe, said the project, which was conceived nine years ago, would promote collaborative research for the promotion of “Town and Gown”; offer curative mechanism for diabetic patients across Africa and ensure health-free society.

He added, “You need this kind of collaboration in the universities for the overall development and the Town and the Gown, like that of the University of Ibadan and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture”.