*Accuses Obasanjo of instigating crisis and insecurity
*Has directed security agencies to investigate criminal aspects of the letter
*Denies raising a killer squad, challenges Obasanjo to list those on the alleged assassination list
*Describes Sanusi’s letter upon which Obasanjo based his key allegation as baseless and mischievious
*Says he does not impose party leaders
*Says Boko Haram and insecurity have been contained
*Government fighting corruption
President Goodluck Jonathan has formally replied former President Olusegun Obasanjo, saying that he is compelled to make the reply because the former’s letter posed a threat to national security, hence it must be replied via the same communication channel it was written.
Jonathan noted that he had discussed previous letters of Obasanjo personally with the former President, noting that after such discussions, he didn’t not that the former President still expected formal written communication.
The President stated that Obasanjo was unjust to him by alleging that he is incompetent, deceptive, clannish and lacking in personal honour, pointing out he is steering the state ship on the path of development.
He said: “I have not, myself, ever claimed to be all-knowing or infallible, but I have never taken Nigeria or Nigerians for granted as you implied, and I will continue to do my utmost to steer our ship of state towards the brighter future to which we all aspire.”
The President accused Obasanjo of instigating the governors to leave the party, stating that he is a master of anti-party activities. Jonathan said that Obasanjo was involved in high level anti-party activities while in office, oppressing the governors at will. He recalled that at a point, Obasanjo sent link men to snatch party structures from state governors.
Jonathan said: “Instigating people to cause problems and disaffection within the party is something that you are certainly familiar with. You will recall that founding fathers of the Party were frustrated out of the Party at a time. Late Chief Sunday Awoniyi was pushed out, Late Chief Solomon Lar left and later came back, Chief Audu Ogbeh and Chief Tom Ikimi also left. Chief Okwesilieze Nwodo left and later came back. In 2005/2006, link-men were sent to take over party structures from PDP Governors in an unveiled attempt to undermine the state governors. In spite of that, the Governors did not leave the Party because nobody instigated and encouraged them to do so.”
He denied getting involved in anti-party activities in Anambra, Edo and Ondo States, stating that as President, he worked to create a level playing field for the true winner to emerge.
Jonathan reminded Obasanjo that Boko Haram activities dated back to 2002, while Obasanjo was in power, pointing out that his administration has brought the criminality under control and checked the incessant bombings of Churches and public places that he inherited. He stated that kidnappings and armed robbery are being tackled.
The President noted that corruption has been deeply rooted in Nigeria since the first republic, with Fela and Suuny Okosuns singing about it in Obasanjo’s first coming as military Head of State. He regretted that Obasanjo would base his allegation on a spurious letter by the CBN Governor.
Said the President: “Baba, I am amazed that with all the knowledge garnered from your many years at the highest level of governance in our country, you could still believe the spurious allegation contained in a letter written to me by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and surreptitiously obtained by you, alleging that USD49.8 billion, a sum equal to our entire national budget for two years, is “unaccounted for” by the NNPC. Since, as President, you also served for many years as Minister of Petroleum Resources, you very well know the workings of the corporation.”
He pointed out that his administration has carefully worked to address the educational disadvantage of the north with the establishment of 124 Almijiri schools and the setting up of nine Federal Universities. He said this step was taken because some unscrupulous politicians were using the Northern kids as cannon fodders in their personal fights.
The President denied raising a team to assassinate and arrest high profile Nigerians. While calling on Obasanjo to prove his allegations because they are criminal in nature, the President said that security agencies have been directed to critically investigate the issues raised.
He said: “I also find it difficult to believe that you will accuse me of assisting murderers, or assigning a presidential delegation to welcome a murderer. This is a most unconscionable and untrue allegation. It is incumbent on me to remind you that I am fully conscious of the dictates of my responsibilities to God and our dear nation. It is my hope that devious elements will not take advantage of your baseless allegation to engage in brazen and wanton assassination of high profile politicians as before, hiding under the alibi your “open letter” has provided for them.
“Nevertheless, I have directed the security agencies and requested the National Human Rights Commission to carry out a thorough investigation of these criminal allegations and make their findings public.”
The President also denied stopping Governor Amaechi from obtaining an international loan, saying that the process for the acquisition of the loan is still on-going.