Sunday, August 30, 2015
Obasanjo Is A Traitor Who Likes Nobody, Gani Adams Fires At Ex-President
The National Coordinator of the Oo’dua Peoples Congress, Mr. Gani Adams, in an interview with TOBI AWORINDE has also condemned a former president of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, saying he does things to satisfy his own personal interest and has no interest of anyone at heart. He said a lot and even mentioned the names of some people the president has fought. Part of the interview below...
During the Goodluck Jonathan administration, ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo displayed a strong dislike for the former’s leadership style. What is your view on Obasanjo’s criticisms?
Obasanjo did not normally agree with any President for a period of four years. If he is praising you at the beginning, within two years, he will have problems with you. There is no human being on earth that can satisfy Obasanjo. He is just like a father, but that is the truth. Even when former President Shehu Shagari was there, within four years, Obasanjo started nursing certain feelings towards him. When Buhari was there, from 1984 to 1985, Obasanjo refused to do anything with him; meanwhile, he was dining and wining tactically with (a former Head of State, Gen. Ibrahim) Babangida. If you don’t come to Ota farm, even coming to him, he can set you up. Continue...
He had issues with (Gen. Sani) Abacha before he was arrested and later was saying (late Chief Moshood) Abiola was not the Messiah—the same Abiola, who had personally prostrated before Prof. Wole Soyinka in Sheraton Hotel, Lagos, begging him to let Obasanjo become the United Nations Secretary General. But when Abiola’s turn came, he turned his back on him.
He was in prison when Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar came to in power. In 1999, he (Obasanjo) was given power; he dealt with virtually 90 per cent of the people that assisted him from prison to power. He disagreed with (the late President) Umar Yar’Adua for befriending Daniel.
When Jonathan came into power, within two and a half years as Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party’s Board of Trustees, Obasanjo had issues with him. Before the end of Jonathan’s four years, he tore his PDP membership card. I have never seen any person on earth, who a party would bring from prison to become president for eight years. No matter the situation or issue, couldn’t he have been silent like Abdulsalami or Yakubu Gowon? Is it when one becomes an elder statesman that he should become an activist? If we, as activists, are heating up the polity, as an elder statesman, he should tactically caution us or persuade us. But when an elder statesman, who has been in power for 11 years, becomes an activist to the point that he campaigned publicly for the candidate of a party, then you can be sure something is wrong.
He also spoke about Tinubu's hatred for him;
You have been very vocal about your conflict with the national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Have you settled your differences?
I will tell you categorically, he (Tinubu) is a person I was so close to. But I realise now that he didn’t like me. He was just trying to manage me.
Why doesn’t he like you?
I don’t know. He was trying to identify with the group (OPC) back then, but he was not planning to repackage it to make it great. We tried our best for him. We stood by him when Obasanjo was trying to water him down. As a matter of fact, when Obasanjo detained me for 14 months, I got information from the (Presidential) Villa that one of my offences was that I was very close to Tinubu. It took the intervention of the law of the land to effect my release in 2006. Obasanjo wanted to keep me in detention till the 2007 general elections so that Tinubu (as Lagos State governor) would not hand over power to his successor, Babatunde Fashola.
I was blackmailed by even most of the leaders of the PDP back then because of my closeness to Tinubu. We later realised that he (Tinubu) did not want the group to exist. In the middle of our (OPC) crisis — though we had no evidence at the time that he was the one fuelling it — he couldn’t call us for reconciliation. He preferred to dine with (OPC founder, Dr. Frederick) Fasehun and I separately. Majority of OPC members were in Lagos, but Tinubu did not do it (resolve the crisis). After Daniel’s reconciliation process, Bayo Banjo called me and said, ‘Gani, Lagos is your base as OPC. We need Tinubu to put finishing touches to this reconciliation’. This was after we had held a press conference, where I was named National Coordinator of the OPC and Fasehun, founding father. (Osun State Governor Rauf) Aregbesola was then the Lagos State Commissioner for Works. Together, we drove to Bourdillion to meet Tinubu.
After we got to Tinubu’s office and Banjo presented his case, the first thing he (Tinubu) did was to bring out a magazine. He said we should look at the publicity that Daniel used the reconciliation to make. We said, ‘Your Excellency, what is the problem? Do yours for the sake of history in Yorubaland, after all the bloodshed that had happened within the group’. But he just went into a long rigmarole and that was how we left that place. Banjo was highly disappointed, but God has said He is happy with anyone who initiates peace.
Tinubu and I disagree politically. The last election marked the first time that we had to disagree openly and from the beginning of the election, I had made up my mind that anywhere Tinubu is, I will not go there. Even if he is supporting the right candidate, I will go for the wrong candidate. You can ask some of the Yoruba APC members; some of them accused me of not supporting (President) Muhammadu Buhari. I told some people, who are close to Buhari in Abuja, that I wouldn’t align with them as long as Tinubu is still APC leader in the South-West. I could have supported Jonathan without making a noise, but I knew Tinubu was so smart. If he realises you are not supporting him, he will strike your structure from underneath. So, we made sure that we blocked those holes to a certain extent and that is why since 2007, he has been asking some OPC members to say a lot of things about me. But I told people that you can’t expect me to be joining issues with parasites. Politics is a game of number. If someone is supporting a candidate against you, you look for a way to tackle him. One cannot drag me into supporting a candidate on the pages of the newspaper. We have to negotiate.
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