By Victor Arjiromanus
Arewa Youth Parliament, AYP, has faulted former President Olusegun Obasanjo for saying Nigeria is becoming a failed state, describing the remark as an act of selfishness.
It also said Obasanjo lacked evidence to back the claim that Nigeria is falling under the leadership of Buhari.
Briefing newsmen yesterday in Abuja, President of the group, Abdulraham Umar Aliyu, urged Nigerians to be wary of Obasanjo, saying Buhari would usher in better days.
His words:”We have called this Press Conference as our patriotic humble response to some recent disturbing, unpatriotic and uncourteous statements credited to a former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, who in his usual penchant for attacking any government not giving in to his egocentric and self centred manipulation, described Nigeria under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, as slowly becoming a failed state and a basket case that urgently needed to be pulled from the brink of collapse.
“We wish to categorically and unequivocally state, that, the recent attack by Chief Obasanjo on the administration of President Buhari, is another desperate attempt by the former President, at projecting unto President Buhari, the failures of his leadership, when he was in power. We wish to also state it clear, that, the ways of Obasanjo are not those of the President Buhari and this difference has meant the better for Nigeria. This is so glaringly clear and unambiguous for any right thinking and well meaning citizen to decipher.
“There is nothing done by Obasanjo as a President, that was not self serving and disadvantageous to our national interest, as Nigerians,hence against the collective interests of all us as citizens.
“Chief Obasanjo is many things to many people; but, he is all things unto himself. His recent contribution to our political discourse wherein he alleges that our country is divided under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, shows he benefits from an exceedingly faulty memory, is purely shameless or has a most wicked sense of humor. Perhaps, all three are facets of his make up and were equally on display in his latest prosaic display.
“Obasanjo makes fiery allegations against the Buhari’s government, but offers no corroborating evidence; he presents only reams of words. This is because Obasanjo is projecting onto the incumbent administration, the misconducts he did, while in power. Yet, the ways of Obasanjo are not those of the APC. And this difference has meant the better for Nigeria.
“Moreover, Chief Obasanjo should be the last to complain about the state of the nation. His administration was an an unalloyed miscarriage of justice and of the best aspirations of the Nigerian people. We all knew he was not elected in 1999. He was handed Nigeria on a silver platter; perhaps, because, Nigeria was so easily given that he went about treating the nation as if it was a less than precious thing; he thought it was a cheap give-away, not a privilege to govern this nation.
This man should have positioned himself to be the Father of the nation. All the goodwill that could be granted a political figure was bestowed on him. The global economy was such that it fueled our growth. Everyone wanted Nigeria to succeed after emerging from years of obnoxious military rule. Despite the flawed exercise that rendered him President, we all bit our tongues in hope that he would say and do the right things that would have moved Nigeria forward.
“Instead of being a unifying figure as the Commander-in-chief, he lowered himself to being a divisive, vindictive conniver. There was no table which he neared that he did not upset and overturn. There was no one who came into his company, for any period of time, with whom he did not fall out if he expressed a thought contrary to one of his.
He tried to convert our young democracy into a one party state. His PDP boasted that they would rule for 60 uninterrupted years. Never did they boast that they would govern us well during even one year of the sixty years. He could have placed the economy on the path to durable growth and shared prosperity through diversification, industrialization and creation of a social safety net for the poor. Instead, he handed the economy over to a tight group of cronies, turning what should be a modern economy into a version of the mammoth trading companies that dominated the 17th and 18th century.
“We hoped that Obasanjo would personify statesmanship, thus showing the way to a more benign political culture. Given the vast margin between the good he could have achieved and the nebulous feats that comprise his true record, Chief Obasanjo is the person most responsible for the flaws in the Nigerian political economy since 1999. His ego is as expansive as the firmament, but his good deeds would fit into a modest sachet, with ample room to spare.
Obasanjo should be ashamed to even raise this issue. When he was president, the economy was on an easy sledding due to positive global trends. Obasanjo did not raise a finger to do anything for the poor. If anything good trickled down to the poor it was by accident. Obasanjo left the poor unattended to, because, he cared less or nothing for them. Poverty increased under his cold indifference. Not one meaningful social program was established during his watch. In reliance on these artifices of Obasanjo and his ilk, many Nigerians were thrusted down the lower rungs of the poverty they so desperately sought to avoid. Obasanjo’s allies gobbled the savings of the poor and still feast on them to this day.
“Nigerians should be wary of Obasanjo and his fake love and patriotism for our country. Nigeria’s redemption from the past inherited from Obasanjo and his cronies, is still very much on course. We must never allow these yesterday men, to distract our journey to a greater Nigeria.
“President Buhari deserves our support and solidarity at this very moment of our nation’s history and we should continue to demonstrate this, at all times.
With Buhari in the saddle our better days are near, In Sha Allahu.”