Politics

Two Major Mistakes I’ve Made In Life, So Far – Obasanjo

Ola ‘Kiya, Reporting

Nigeria’s former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, on Saturday, hinted that he had, amid several, made two significant mistakes he will hardly forget.

One of the two mistakes, the octogenarian retorted, was the error of picking his number-two man when he wanted to become the nation’s democratically-elected president in 1999.

Stonix News reports that President Muhammadu Buhari, when asked by Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister (PM) of Great Britain, whether he would be running for another term during a bilateral meeting at Kigali, Rwanda simply quipped: “Another term for me? No! The first person who tried it didn’t end very well.”

It will be recalled that Owu-born ex-military general, whom Buhari was referring to, had current Presidential flagbearer of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, as his vice between 1999 and 2007 who was believed to have frustrated his third-term agenda.

Obasanjo, made the remarks on Saturday during a question-and-answer session at a programme by Students for the Advancement of Global Entrepreneurship (SAGE) for selected secondary schools that participated in the final of the National Exhibition and Awards.

At the event held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), the former president said he though he had made many mistakes in his life.

He, however, noted that his choice of Adamawa-born Atiku was a genuine mistake which God helped him to overcome.

“One of the mistakes I made was picking my Number Two when I wanted to become the president. But because it was a genuine mistake God saved me,” he quipped.

Unveiling his second mistake, the former military head of state, between 1976 and 1979, said it was a grace error for refusing to bolt away from the country when he learnt that the former maximum ruler and military head of state, Sani Abacha was after him.

“The second one 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 has 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 a mistake, but God saved me from them all,” he added.

Stonix News reports that Obasanjo was incarcerated by the Abacha junta over trumped up charges on alleged treachery bordering on coup.

He was kept in the prison until Abacha, who ruled from 1993, died in his sleep on June 8, 1998 after which Obasanjo gained back his freedom.

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