Obasanjo Gives Kudos To Buhari For Supporting Adesina’s Re-election As AfDB, President, Urges Him To Reopen Schools To Return 14 Million Nigerian Children Out Of School Back To Their School

By Elizabeth Chukwuma

Those who think that former President Olusegun Obasanjo and President Muhammadu Buhari, are sworn  enemies because of the way they lambast each other in public   may have to  do  a rethink  before they are caught in the cross fire and become the victim.

This is because there is no deep animosity between them  as they have made the people to believe while entertaining the public  in their usual character.

They are both retired Army Generals who are guided by’’ the spirit de corps’’. The duo a had served at different times as former military  Heads of State and equally as elected Presidents of the country, an indication that they  have something  in common , which people may not have known over the years.

Recall that penultimate week, the Ogun state born former Nigerian President  had accused Buhari, of mismanaging the country, stating that  It is drifting to’’ a failed state and badly divided’’. He had attributed the problem plaguing the  country  to lack of unity .  Obasanjo ‘s emotional outburst may have forced the Presidency to fire back , labeling  him as ‘’Nigeria’s  Divider Commander  –In-Chief’’.

Obasajo: Hails buhari For Not Rejecting Adesina’s Recommendation By Jonathan For AfDB President

In apparent response to the former President’s criticisms of the Buhari Administration of mismanagement of the country, the Presidency had Challenged him to proffer solutions to the problems plaguing the country as an elder Statesman.

 But barely  two weeks after the war of words between the Ogun state born politician and the Presidency  as  a result of his  negative  comment about  Buhari, the tough talking  former Nigerian President may have taken advantage of the recent visit of the Freelance  and Independent  Broadcasters Association of Nigeria, , FIBAN, led by Desmond Nwachukwu, the National President to him at his Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Pent House, Abeokuta, Capital of the south west state , to  give kudos Buhari, for   throwing his weight to see to the re-election of Akiwumi  Adesina, a one -time minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, under former Presideent Goodluck Jonathan, of the then ruling People’s Democratic Party, PDP,  as the President of the African Development Bank, AfDB, an affiliate of the World Bank.

Note that Obasanjo never see anything good in the Buhari Administration,in his first term in office, that he was always attacking him on the pages of the Newspaperss. He had continued  the attack on the Katsina state born Nigerian Prsident even in this his second term in office that people were getting worried whether he is  not tired of criticising in order to give him time to fulfill his electioneering Campaign promises to the people.

 The re-election of Akinwumi as AfDB President may have changed his opinion  about the Daura politician going by his recent  Comment on him. He may not have spoken on the Adesina re-election in the public and the support of the Buhari Administration to his victory   but he had opportunity  of doing so  with the recent visit of the leadership of FIBAN to him. He  stoped short at saying that  the  Nigerian President was instrumental to the re-election of the Adesina as the AfDB  psident.

Given an insisder information on how Adesina found himself as the AfDB  President, he had said that former President Jonathan had recommended him for the exalted  office but could not  complete what his government had started to install him as the first Nigerian to become the President of the Bank until his government  was voted  out of power in 2015, in the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, conducted  Presidential election, won by Buhari, on the ticket of the All Progressive Congress, APC.

Obasanjo, who could not hide his feelings had said that the Buhari led APC government’’ could have rejected Adesina’s nomination by former President Jonathan, coming from the PDP’’ to support another Candidate vying for the office .

 Instead he  had continued from where his predecessor had  stopped  to ensure that Adesina wins the AfDB election as President of AfDB, in 2015.The support given to the former minister  of Agriculture and Rural Development, without looking at the political differences between him and Jonathan that recommended him to the African Union to take up the position as Nigerian Candidate,  may have informed why  Obasanjo told FIBAN, officials   ‘’I must commend the President  for supporting Adesina all through in ensuring that he clinches the AfDB, President in 2015 and re-elected for another five –year term in 2020’’.  

It would be recalled that that the former Nigerian President had started the  Campaign for Adesina’s re-election bid   to forestall any attempt by the Buhari government   to withdraw their support from him.  He had reached out  to  14 other former African Presidents who were said to have joined him to mobilise support for  Adesina.

He has his reason for doing so. This is because of his believe that did very well in his first  term  in office and therefore, by delivering on his promises  to take Africa away from poverty, noting that if given another opportunity , he would be able to complete all the projects that he had started  in his first term in office, expected to reposition  the African Continent on the fast lane of development compared to Europe, China, United Kingdom and the North American country of the United states.

Unknown to Obasanjo, the Nigerian President had also reached out to other African leaders, urging them  to support Adesina, the incumbent AfDB President and Nigerian Candidate , who is seeking re-election. This may have informed why  he was  endorsed by the African Union, AU,  and subsequently given 100% vote on the day of the election at Abidjan,  Capital of Cotede’Ivoire and the Bank Headquarters last month without any  opposition last August.

Notwithstanding President Buhari’s government support to facilitate Adesina’s re-election bid, Obasanjo had said  that his education qualifications  played  a vital role  in making him and other Nigerians  who are making the country proud in the global scene.

 Worried that about 14 million Nigerian  children are out of school due to the Wuhan Town in the Hebei Province of the Asian country  of China emerged coronavirus, popular, COVID 19, resulting the lock down of the country since last March , 2020,  he may have sent a message to   Buhari that ’’the first thing to do now is how to get  the 14  Children that are  out of school back to school in order to prepare them  to contribute to the development of the country in the future’’.

According to him, ‘’it is having good education  that will  make each one of  them   a good product  to market in the global  market like Adesina and Dr, Oramah, AFRISM President and  several other Nigerians , who are where they are today in the Internationational scene.

Many believe that Obasanjo may have spoken well about Buhari before the FIBAN , officials , instead of seeing  it as another  opportunity to attack  him because of the Presidency appeal to him ‘’to sheath his sword and stop criticizing the government but ‘’proffer solutions to the problem plaguing the country’’. He may have got the message loud and clear, to give a breather to Buhari, in order not to see him as a perpetual enemy  of his government.

Political analysts believe that despite  the government continuous  shifting of the gold post for the reopening of schools including the tertiary Institutions in the country,  Obasanjo’s passionate appeal  to Buhari to act quickly to bring the over  14 million   Children  who would have been in school undergoing their education training  back to  school may force the government speed  up the reopening of the schools soonest as the government may not want to keep the schools  locked for too long.   

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