Connect with us


Obasanjo blames National Assembly for Buhari’s lopsided appointments of military chiefs



Obasanjo blames National Assembly for Buhari’s lopsided appointments of military chiefs

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has expressed dismay over the failures of the National Assembly and Federal Character Commission to oppose President Muhammadu Buhari’s concentration of the appoinment of the nation’s security apparatus in few ethnic hands.

Buhari’s government has been gravely accused of having almost all the heads of security offices in the country appointed from the North.

And Obsanjo on Thursday at the secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Oke Ilewo area of Abeokuta, soon after the Coalition for Nigeria Movement was inaugurated in Ogun State and he was registered as a member of the movement, accused Buhari of ignoring federal character in his appointments.

He noted that his recent open letter asking President Buhari not to seek re-election was not borne out of malice, but out of his deep concern for happenings in the country.

“Let me emphasise important areas, programmes, priorities or processes for improved attention. To start with, we seem to have taken nation building for granted. Nation building must be given continued attention to give every citizen a feeling of belonging and a stake in his or her country.

“For instance, the Federal Character principle, as espoused in our constitution, was to guide the leadership to search for competent holders of major offices to be distributed within the entire nation, and avoid concentration in a few ethnic hands or geographical places, as we currently have in the leadership of our security apparatus.

“To avoid such non-integrative situation, we have the National Assembly and the Federal Character Commission, both institutions which must raise the alarm or call for correction of actions by the executive that violates the spirit of our constitution.

Read also: 2019: APC says Obasanjo’s CNM a mere ‘civil society organization’ without a real threat

“Last week, I issued a statement which I did not do lightly or frivolously but out of deep concern for the situation of our country.

“I wonder why some Nigerians were worried why I had to pay respect to the Nigerian President at Addis Ababa. That’s my own upbringing as a well born and bred Yoruba boy.

“That doesn’t mean that what I have said about the President, was said out of bitterness and hatred. It is evident that the President has performed, in some areas, good enough. In other areas not good and a proper advice was given which he may take and he may not take.

“I didn’t do that out of malice or out of ‘bad belle.’ I did it out of my respect for that office and my interest, and I hope, in your interest and the interest of Buhari in Nigeria.

READ ALSO: Senate resumes fight with Buhari over Magu, vows not to screen any nominees

“I went to him just before the beginning of the opening of the AU summit. I had gone round to greet some few other Presidents, should I ignore him? So, I went to my President, greeted him and we joked before General Abdulsalami (Abubakar) said we should have a group photograph.

“I had wanted him (Buhari) to stand in the middle before he said I am the most senior and the photograph went viral on the social media.”

On why CNM was necessary, he reasoned, “If what we have tried in the past has not taken us to the Promised Land, we have to try something else and something else is this grassroots popular movement built from the bottom-up to lead us, I hope and pray, to the Promised Land.”

He insisted that if the movement “decides to transform itself and go into partisan politics, I will cease to be a member.

“If there are people of like minds, people who share the views and the aims and objectives of the Coalition for Nigeria Movement who want to join this movement, we will not object, we will welcome them.

“It sees itself as a popular movement that can accommodate all Nigerians irrespective of their political interest or affiliations and will propel Nigeria forward.

“This is the new message in town, the new dance in town, the ceremony in town and I will appeal to you to join this ceremony and dance in town.

“There may be many masquerades and those of you who had my own type of background, when we were growing up, we were playing masquerades too but those were small masquerades, but when big masquerades come out, the small masquerades must go.”


RipplesNigeria… without borders, without fears

Click here to join the Ripples Nigeria WhatsApp group for latest updates.

Join the conversation


Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism

Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.

As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.

If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.

Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.

Donate Now