The Nigerian Government on Sunday came down hard on former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, over his latest comment on the state of the nation, describing him as the country’s ‘Divider-in-Chief.’
Obasanjo had on Thursday said Nigeria was slowly becoming a failed state and a basket case that urgently needs to be pulled from the brink of collapse.
Speaking while delivering a speech titled “Moving Nigeria away from tipping over” at a consultative dialogue in Abuja, the former President said he had never seen Nigeria so divided, adding that many of the problems plaguing the country today were due to the recent mismanagement of Nigeria’s diversity.
But the Nigerian Government in a statement by Senior Special Assistant to the President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, on Sunday said the former leader had become a divisive figure.
Shehu insisted that Obasanjo’s criticisms of President Buhari were devoid of good intentions, claiming that the former Nigerian leader wasn’t jealous of Buhari’s achievements.
He said, “In his most recent statement former President Olusegun Obasanjo attempts to divide the nation while President Muhammadu Buhari continues to promote nation building and the unity of Nigeria. The difference is clear. From the lofty heights of Commander-in-Chief, General Obasanjo has descended to the lowly level of Divider-in-Chief (to adapt the coinage of Time).
“It’s a known fact that the withdrawal of subsidies had been on the wish list of the Obasanjo-led Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. They failed in achieving these measures because, one there was a shared greed. They plundered the treasury as much as anyone could in the name of either subsidy or waiver with reckless impunity.
“Two, is to say it takes courage and rare statesmanship on the part of a leader to do as President Buhari to shun populism and seek the best interest of the people and the state, providing the kind of reform and development that Nigeria urgently needs.
“Nigeria, which other nations had mocked and ridiculed for so many things that were wrong is today progressing at a pace reflecting its size and potential.
“With so much to show and many more coming, it is little surprise that President Buhari would be the object of envy and harsh unfair challenges by politicians who failed to deliver, but continue to nurse ambitions of delighting the audience long after their curtain has been drawn.”