2nd March, 2020
The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) on Monday warned Nigeria’s former President, Olusegun Obasanjo to stop beating the drums of war.
The BMO was speaking in reaction to Obasanjo’s comment at the first memorial lecture organised in honour of the founder of the Oodua People’s Congress, Dr Fredrick Fasehun, in which the former president said the present government needed to heed the agitations of those clamouring for restructuring before such agitations develop into self-determination.
He advised President Muhammadu Buhari to heed the call now before it would be too late, saying that Nigeria could not afford to be plunged into another war because the nation might not survive the second civil war.
Reacting to this, BMO said Obasanjo should, as an elder statesman, do and say things that would help build a strong and united nation, rather than beating drums of war or inciting the populace against the government.
It stated that Obasanjo’s comment was not the kind of things one would expect from a man who had been at the helm of affairs of this nation on two different occasions, noting that Obasanjo’s comments during the lecture amounted to a call for anarchy and must be condemned.
In a statement signed by its Chairman, Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, BMO stated that the comments made by the former President, were nothing short of hypocritical and inciting, coming from a man who had the opportunity to make some of the changes he was proposing but failed to do so.
“Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo spoke on the issue of restructuring and asked the Executive and Legislative institutions to work towards this. He refused to acknowledge that this matter is currently before the National Assembly of which a Restructuring Committee chaired by the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, was inaugurated only recently.
“But it has always been the practiced style of Obasanjo to play the ostrich, especially when it involves matters related to the President Muhammadu Buhari administration. He consciously takes effort not to see anything positive in the Buhari led administration.
“The most pretentious, and in fact where Obasanjo’s hackneyed hypocrisy came to play, was when he did not admit his failures as President when he held the reins of power.
“Obasanjo as President had the opportunity to work with the National Assembly to bring about the reforms he is suggesting today; but rather than do this, he chose to manipulate the National Assembly at every point for his selfish ambitions, and whenever they did not toe his line he used all manners of subterfuge, including, as alleged by many, bribing officials to sack the leadership of the National Assembly.
“This same Obasanjo, when he had an opportunity to work with the National Assembly to change Nigeria for the better, rather sought tenure elongation – a sinister move that fell flat and failed,” it stated.
According to BMO, Nigeria is a peaceful state and that this might not be what Obasanjo wanted; “hence his irresponsible remarks subtly calling on self-determination groups to take up arms against the state. Such calls will not be tolerated by peace-loving Nigerians.
“Obasanjo pretended to mean well when he claimed that he would die for the unity of Nigeria. But in another breath, he urged that elements seeking self-determination take up arms against the Nigerian state.
“We believe that the former President was only using the restructuring conversation to sneak in his sinister agenda and find himself relevant among Nigerians.”