A former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, yesterday, insisted that the PDP presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, Atiku Abubakar, is better than President Muhammadu Buhari “by far”.
Obasanjo also asked the PDP to purge itself of “bad eggs and hypocrites” who according to him, lacked the commitment and goodwill to return the opposition party to its lost glory.
Obasanjo spoke when South West PDP leaders led by the party’s National Vice Chairman (South West), Dr. Eddy Olafeso, visited him at his Residence inside the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta in Ogun State.
Among those at the meeting were Senate Minority Leader, Biodun Olujimi, Senators-elect, Kola Balogun (Oyo South), Ayo Akinyelure (Ondo Central), Rep-elect, Hon Ajibola Muraina (Ibarapa North and Central), a former Osun State Governor, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, a former Minister for State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada and PDP gubernatorial candidate in Ekiti State in 2018, Prof Olusola Eleka.
Also at the meeting were a former Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Kofoworola Bucknor-Akerele, a former Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Shuaibu Oyedoku, 2017 PDP governorship candidate in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), among others.
The Ota-farmer, who said he critically compared Buhari and Atiku’s competences before settling for the latter in the last elections, bemoaned what he called “failure of leadership”.
He said Nigeria could not move forward “if we continue the way we are.”
According to him, Nigeria demands a vibrant voice and opposition in PDP with a view to building a virile democracy.
The former president, who pointed out that many leaders of the party were after “their pockets and stomach”, wondered why some top echelon had left the party while others had lost hope shortly after the results of the 2019 presidential elections were announced.
For PDP to bounce back, Obasanjo said the party must purge itself of hypocrites and bad eggs and shop for those he called “critical mass of committed people”.
These set of people, he submitted, “would be ready to stand with the party come rain, come shine.”
“Politically speaking, you can’t be my friend if you don’t buy into the Nigerian Project. For me, till death, I will continue to push for a better Nigeria.
“I said if you compare the two of them (referring to Atiku and Buhari); with what I know and all I have written about the incumbent (president) which they have decided to cover up, Atiku is better than the incumbent by far. That’s the point I am making. And nobody is perfect.
“I am not a perfect person. I have my shortcomings. If I deny my shortcomings, it means I am not being truthful to myself. But, my shortcomings have nothing to do with my love for Nigeria. It has nothing to do with being greedy or selfish,” Obasanjo said.
Earlier in his address, Olafeso said the visit was to celebrate Obasanjo on his 82nd birthday which he marked recently and equally thanked him for his support for the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, in the 2019 elections.
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