By News Express on 15/12/2016
There is this malaise that former President Matthew Okikiola Olusegun Obasanjo has refused to extirpate from his character, so, it looms large in the despicable footprints he has left on Nigeria’s unfortunate history. And if we could look earnestly at this man, whom chance and bad judgment of otherwise well-meaning persons have thrown up at various times in Nigeria’s history, instead of gawking, we would easily notice the terrible streak I’m addressing.
No, there is no need to blame Gen Alani Akinrinade (retd) and Brig-Gen Alaba-Isama (retd), erstwhile able assistants to late Brigadier Benjamin Adekunle, alias Black Scorpion, for recommending Obasanjo to be the new General Officer Commanding (GOC) the Third Marine Commando, in late 1969. Yet, when the Nigerian Civil War ended months later in January 1970, when a hunger-flagellated, arms and ammunition-forsaken and totally fatigued Biafra welcomed peace and gave up the struggle, Obasanjo alone claimed all the credit. And he wrote a brash book to celebrate it and misled those who would have the misfortune of thinking that a book written by an officer about the war he fought in should have a modicum of truth.
Then, on Nigeria’s tragic day of 13th February 1976, Lt Col Buka Suka Dimka and his collaborators assassinated Gen. Murtala Muhammed, who had been in power for all of 200 glorious days. The officers who rallied together to stop the coup attempt did the supposedly right thing by insisting that Murtala’s second-in-command should assume office. Thus, Obasanjo, who was hiding under the bed of the late business mogul, Chief S.B. Bakare, while other officers risked their lives to rout Dimka and his fellow malcontents, was pushed onto Nigeria’s centre-stage. Twenty years after he left office, lightning struck at the same spot a second time; the same Obasanjo was invited to come and lead Nigeria, in recompense to his Yoruba nation, for the presidency denied late Chief Moshood Kashimawo.Abiola, though he had cleanly and clearly won the June 12, 1993 election. Actually, this was another attack on Abiola, for, by then, Obasanjo was already a known enemy of Abiola; as Abiola, who was Obasanjo’s school mate, had become far richer than Obasanjo; and Obasanjo brooks no competition. Former Vice-President Alex Ekweueme and other members of the G48, who stormed late Gen Sani Abacha’s Aso Rock lion’s den and asked him to “halt and desist” from mutating into a civilian president, were almost all hounded and humiliated by the ingrate who reaped where others had sown.
Now, Obasanjo has left office; no, he was forced out, in 2007. He had his eyes fixed on a life presidency. The rest of us had actually thought the man was bent on just having a third term of four years. But his then Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar, has let the world in on the great secret that Obasanjo was embarked on a life-presidency gambit. And because Atiku had the gumption to stoutly oppose that inglorious life-presidency bid, for which some $5 billion (yes, five billion United States of American dollars) were amassed, Obasanjo declared war against him. Then the money was expended in the largest and most despicable bribery effort in Nigeria and, perhaps, the whole world. Or, in which other country and for what purpose did anyone, no matter how demonic, attempt to bribe the entire legislature of any luckless country? The parliamentarians received from N200 million to N50 million apiece. It was the world’s most inglorious bazaar.
Atiku also led the fight against that life-presidency bid. He found like-minds in Gen. T.Y Danjuma (retd), who said Obasanjo wanted a fourth term, and told his former friend: “We did not fight the civil war for you alone.” Thereafter, Senators. Suru Yari Gandi, Uche Chukwumerije, Idris Kuta, B.M. Maccido, Ben Obi, etc, and a gallant Senate President Ken Nnamani, ensured that the obnoxious bill to benefit an obnoxious president died an obnoxious death.
Please, note that, here, we are dealing with an Obsanjo whose ego is so outlandish that he could oftentimes equate himself with God. In fact, he has even insulted God Almighty, claiming that God is at his beck and call. Or, what would any right-thinking person make of his impudent statement: “If I had asked God for third term, He would have given it to me.”. So, to this Matthew, God’s will is always trumped by Obasanjo’s whims. Perhaps, never before has a so-called Christian so dastardly insulted God.
So, having situated Obasanjo’s rabid aggression against Atiku, an aggression worsened by a hidden and defiant loneliness, because he has few genuine friends and poor filial love, coupled with his rampant egotism, which does not admit the fact that Nigeria could do without him; an egotism rendered more toxic by tons of guilt he needs to hide, plus a total lack of honour,
The next stage is to show that his administration was not the Nigerian version of Belle Époque (the Beautiful Age) in France and Europe. That will be the second part of this series.
•Eluemunor, former Aso Rock Correspondent, adapted the piece from his unpublished book, The Audacity of Hypocrisy. Photo shows Ex-President Obasanjo.
Source News Express
Posted 15/12/2016 2:48:08 PM
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