The Presidency criticized former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday for calling President Muhammadu Buhari’s seven years in government “awful” and “hell on earth” for Nigerians.
It labeled Obasanjo’s administration as corrupt and added that the outgoing president was morally bankrupt.
The Presidency asserted that from 1999 to 2007, in addition to other crimes committed while in office, Obasanjo lied to the South-East to gain support.
With his criticism of the Buhari administration on Sunday, the elder statesman incited a hornet’s nest. He noted that the country was currently dealing with widespread and mind-numbing insecurity, rudderless leadership, mismanagement of diversity, pervasive corruption, and poor economic policies, which he claimed had led to extreme poverty, massive unemployment, and galloping inflation.
Obasanjo’s endorsement of the Labour Party standard bearer, Peter Obi, in a lengthy New Year message also provoked the All Progressives Congress, Peoples Democratic Party, Social Democratic Party, the All Progressives Grand Alliance and African Action Alliance, which dismissed his support for Obi as of little political value.
But responding to the blistering attacks on Buhari in a statement on Monday, the Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media & Publicity), Garba Shehu said the Owu chief “won’t stop being jealous of anyone who beats him to a new record in the nation’s development process,’’ noting that Buhari is ahead of Obasanjo in all fields of national development.
This, he said, is a cardinal sin to the ex-president.
In the statement titled, ‘Morally squalid Obasanjo attacks leaders out of frustration,’ Shehu said, “Former President Obasanjo is so well known to all that no one needs to describe who he is. But four things we will like to say: One is that he will not stop attacking President Muhammadu Buhari because the former President won’t stop being jealous of anyone who beats him to a new record in the nation’s development process.
“President Buhari is ahead of Chief Obasanjo in all fields of national development and to do that is a cardinal sin to Obasanjo, whose hallucinations tell him that he is the best ever to lead Nigeria and there will never be another one better than him.
“President Buhari just completed the world-class edifice that is the Second Niger Bridge after three decades of failed promises. It is now awaiting commissioning. Obasanjo laid the sod for the bridge in his first term as elected President and work never started.
“When he sought re-election for his second term in office, he returned to the site to turn the sod for the bridge the second time. When the Obi of Onitsha, forthright and scholarly, reminded him that he had done this in the past, Obasanjo told the foremost South-East traditional ruler that he was a liar, in the full presence of the chiefs and oracles in his palace.’’
The presidential aide said the former President failed to build the Second Niger Bridge despite turning the sod twice.
“Obasanjo lied to the South-East to get their votes. President Buhari didn’t get their votes but built the bridge because he believed it is the right thing to do,’’ Garba declared.