Its Lamido or Kwankwaso: Obasanjo’s Double Card for 2015 Leaves Out Jonathan
The decision of former president Olusegun Obasanjo not to support his estranged godson for a second term bid in 2015 has never been hidden. The relationship between the duo still remains frosty and the former president has vowed not to campaign for Jonathan.
But what is he going to do in 2015 if he’s not going to campaign for Jonathan whom mostly have see as the choice candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)? According to report, Obasanjo is going to play a double card both within the ruling PDP and the opposition All Progressives Congress.
According to findings, the plan by Obasanjo would be to back Jigawa State governor Sule Lamido to challenge the president at the primaries, and, if that fails, he is said to have perfected plans to support the presidential aspiration of Kano State governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso under the platform of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC).
In what appears to be a pointer to where the former president will pitch his tent as we gradually walk towards the 2015 general election, one of former president’s political disciple explained reasons why Obasanjo will not support Jonathan.
He accused Jonathan of being ungrateful to the man who brought him to political limelight and said if Jonathan needed him he knows what to do.
“Those accusing Baba Obasanjo of working against the second term of Jonathan should be fair to themselves. When Baba accused Jonathan of planning for the second term instead of honouring the gentleman’s pact he struck shortly before the 2011 election, he not only denied it but his foot soldiers were calling him all sorts of names. Till today, President Jonathan has refused to appreciate what the southwest under Obasanjo did for him,” a former senator said.
The source also accused Jonathan of ignoring his advice to stop interacting with Buruju Kashamu because of his alleged criminal activities in the United States.
“You would agree with me that Jonathan has not been showing any interest in reconciling with his political mentor. Look at the case of Buruji Kashamu, whom Baba disclosed he is having a pending mater in the United States; the president has turned a deaf ear to that counsel; instead…the same man is now the de facto southwest leader of the PDP.”
Investigations however showed that Obasanjo is not on political vacation despite the cold war between him and Jonathan. He is said to have been working behind the scenes for two of his political lieutenants who are nursing presidential ambition.
“Baba (Obasanjo) cannot do without politics; this I can tell you. Not only that, he is going to play prominent roles in the next year general election. I am aware that Governor Kwankwaso of Kano is in touch with him over his perceived presidential ambition. Should his party give him the ticket, Obasanjo would surely support him. Even in the PDP, Obasanjo has Governor Lamido of Jigawa to support when the time comes for the PDP presidential primaries,” another political associate disclosed.
Since President Jonathan replied Obasanjo’s earlier letter, where he accused him of not fighting the anti-graft war well based on the controversial letter written by the then CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi (now Emir of Kano), and Obasanjo’s advice to Jonathan to honour the one-term pact he reportedly agreed to, both have politically remained apart.
Although, after the incident, both have publicly met — like when former leaders were honoured for the centenary celebration and at the funeral service for the late former Lagos State governor, Sir Michael Otedola — they have been avoiding each other.
Jonathan’s foot soldiers have refused to stop their media campaign for his second term bid while Obasanjo has played host to the opposition figures in his Abeokuta home; Kwankwaso has visited him, apparently to seek his endorsement for his perceived presidential ambition.
The governor-elect for Ekiti State, Ayo Fayose, in a recent interview, warned Obasanjo to stop sitting on the fence or get booted out of the party. “Even in the PDP, in the south-west, no leader will disparage the party. We would suspend you. It doesn’t matter whether you are a former president or former governor; if you disparage the party again, we will take you out. I am telling you expressly. By no small means, posterity has put me in this position; if anybody wants to join the APC, let him go there. If former President Olusegun Obasanjo wants to join the APC, let him go to APC. Segun Oni has gone, we don’t beg for membership. We want loyal members of our party. Obasanjo should stop making uncomplimentary statements about the party. If he continues, we will suspend him; nobody is bigger than this party,” Fayose said.
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