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Obasanjo: I regret making Atiku my running mate in 1999

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Saturday said one of his mistakes in life was picking former Vice President Atiku Abubakar as his running mate during the 1999 presidential election.

He stated this Abeokuta, Ogun State, duringan event held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library.

Obasanjo was responding to questions posed by students from selected secondary schools that participated in the final of the National Exhibition and Awards organised by Students for the Advancement of Global Entrepreneurship (SAGE).

Obasanjo and his former number two man, Atiku had a running battle during the build up to the 2003 elections.

He said he had made many “genuine” mistakes in his life, but God made him to overcome.

The former President said, “One of the mistakes I made was picking my Number Two (referring to Atiku) when I wanted to become the President. But because it was a genuine mistake, God saved me.

“The second one (mistake) was when Abacha wanted to arrest me. When Abacha wanted to arrest me, I was told by the American ambassador that they would arrest me and that America had asked that I should be given an asylum. I said no. It could have been a mistake because I could have lost my life.

“I will say there are many things that could have been mistakes but God saved me from them all.”

Obasanjo lamented the current trend of recycling of old politicians in elective positions, stressing that young Nigerians would not have chance to exhibit themselves if the trends continued.

He also spoke on opportunities for the youths to take over the mantle of leadership in the country.

Obasanjo bemoaned the trend of money politics in the country, which he noted would make it difficult for young Nigerians to participate in politics.

He however urged the youths to remain hopeful even in the face of money politics.

He said, “Another thing inhibiting youth from running is the amount of money involved in going into politics. I hope that things should not continue like this.

“I was 39 years old when I became the military Head of State. Twenty years later, I came back as civilian president, but those there now do not want to allow the youths. If things continue like this, I do not know how you can come in.”

 

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CDS listing Kuje escapee with Owo attackers a mix-up – Akeredolu

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Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State says the announcement of a Kuje prison escapee, Idris Ojo, as one of the perpetrators of the June 5 attack on St Francis Catholic Church, Owo, by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, was a mix-up.

Irabor had listed Ojo among those arrested in connection with the attack on the Owo church.

Ojo escaped from Kuje prison when the Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) invaded the facility exactly one month after the Owo attack.

However, Iraboh was said to have listed Ojo among those arrested over Owo attack.

Clarifying the issue in a statement his spokesman, Richard Olatunde, signed on his behalf, Akeredolu said the arrest of the escapee coincided with that of the church attackers, hence the mix-up.

The statement read, “The attention of Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, has been drawn to the announcement of Idris Ojo as one of the attackers of St Francis Catholic Church, Owo, arrested by the security agencies.

“Governor Akeredolu acknowledged the confusion the statement has created in the public space, considering that the ugly event of June 5 attack in Owo preceded the unfortunate incident on Kuje prison.

“The governor said there was a mix-up in the announcement by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor. Governor Akeredolu explained that Idris Ojo, who is number 14 on the wanted list of Kuje Prison Escapees was arrested in his brother’s house in Akure.

“The announcement of the arrest of Idris Ojo as one of the perpetrators of the June 5 attack on St Francis Catholic Church, Owo was a mix up from the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor.

“Idris Ojo, who is number 14 on the wanted list of the Kuje Prison escapees was arrested in his brother’s house in Akure. His brother, Jimoh Rasheed Ibrahim, received and accommodated him after his escape from Kuje prison.

“He was thereafter moved and kept in the custody of the security operatives at the same time the attackers of Owo Catholic Church were arrested and brought into custody, hence, the mix-up.”

Governor Akeredolu urged members of the public to remain vigilant and give necessary supports to the security agencies in the State.

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2023 Presidency: Tinubu most succesful Nigeria’s gov, fit to contest, says Nnamani

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Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is currently the most successful governor in Nigeria and he is fit to contest for President in 2023, ex-Enugu Governor, Chimaroke Nnamani, has said.

He stated this in a series of tweets on Wednesday just as he condemned those attacking Tinubu’s health status, saying they should get their facts right.

Nnamani said, “Ahmed Bola Tinubu is the most successful governor in modern Nigeria bar none.

“While my vote is covered by the Umbrella per my party PDP and our candidate, HE Atiku Abubakar, I take a bow for the hardest working Politico of this generation. He (Tinubu) patiently paid his dues.”

He wrote on his achievements as governor of Lagos State,

“When Bola Ahmed Tinubu was governor, Lagos State’s IGR rose from N600 million per month to over N8 billion per month. He had an impressive track record as a governor.

“His state contributed more than 30% to our country’s GDP, accounted for more than 65% of industrial investment in Nigeria, 80% of its international trade, and collected more than 60% of the country’s value-added tax.

“In the area of human capacity, his mentorship was first class and his mentees have spread out and like little acorns many have become giant oak trees in Nigeria’s political firmaments.”

Commenting on Tinubu’s capacity to lead the country, Nnamani who is representing the Enugu East senatorial district in the Senate, said, “Guess what, the Igbo are not going anyway. Rather in the spirit of their fathers and forefathers more are pouring into Lagos every day. Tinubu is qualified to run for president of Nigeria in 2023 as there is no evidence that he has dementia.”

He also gave instances of former Presidents of the United States of America who were not medically sound but still performed well in their respective tenures.

He said, “Since we all desire a better Nigeria, our politics should be grounded in facts and reliable evidence. This is the only way we can advance this nation. Ahmed Bola Tinubu is the MOST successful governor in modern Nigeria bar none.

“Permit me to mention some past presidents who stood out for being able to contribute to the growth and greatness of their countries despite health issues. The first person on my lineup is John F. Kennedy (JFK). JFK actually experienced almost daily discomfort. He had digestive issues, allergies, and a persistent back condition that necessitated several operations and was made worse by his participation in World War II. He had medical sequelae of hypoadrenalism, anemia, low blood pressure, etc essentially later determined to be Addison’s disease. Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), the longest serving president of the United States of America served his term as president on a wheelchair this was as a result of polio diagnosis when he was 39yrs old in 1921.”

 

 

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One million compatriots died to keep Nigeria together — Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari

•Says God willing, Nigeria will remain one

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