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GENERAL OBASANJO’S LATEST MANUFACTURED INDIGNATION

Few days back, a letter was leaked to the media in Nigeria allegedly from former President Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo to current President Goodluck Jonathan, regarding Obasanjo’s latest indignation at Jonathan’s style of governance, albeit a self-serving vitriolic hocus-pocus of indignation. But some Nigerians are taking Obasanjo’s letter seriously. For most Nigerians, nothing Obasanjo says or writes are ever going to change their minds about this tyrannical, corrupt, duplicitous, arrogant, vindictive chameleon, megalomaniac, whose sole aim to writing the letter has nothing to do with Goodluck Jonathan’s governance, but everything to do with Obasanjo’s quest for world recognition and a Nobel Prize which can never be bestowed on military tyrants like him. Obasanjo should understand that Nigerians have a right of reply to the non-so-clever wool he was trying to pull over our wide open eyes. Below are three of some of the articles written about Obasanjo in the past:
Letter to Africa AFRICAN JUDGES V. DICTATORIAL AND LAWLESS PRESIDENTS: By Chika Onyeani – African Sun Times, January 8-14, 2007 Snippett: “However, on Tuesday May 16, 2006, Obasanjo’s third-term ambitions were dealt with a decisive and crushing defeat by members of the Nigerian Senate which had voted to reject the attempts to amend the Nigerian constitution so that President Obasanjo could run for a third-term. But rather than rising in magnanimity above this shameful attempt to scuttle the Nigerian constitution, as well as the mandate of the new charter of the African Union, of which he supposedly played a major role in crafting, Obasanjo has decided to play god. But God himself doesn’t look kindly to those who try to act like Him. History looks at people who have tried to play god, and it hasn’t been very kind to them, including Hitler, Muossulini, Idi Amin, Emperor Bokassa, and coming to Nigeria, Sani Abacha. Abacha played god, he played god when he arrested Obasanjo and clamped him into prison without just cause. There were praise singers and sycophants then who egged him on. There are also many praise singers and sycophants just as in Abacha’s time who are egging on Obasanjo on his destructive path to avenge the defeat of his third-term ambitions. There were individuals who were hollering and screaming about Abacha being the best god Nigeria could have, just as you have individuals who are hailing Obasanjo as the best thing that could happen to Nigeria, despite what he is trying to do to the country.” In a series of rulings, African judges seem to be asserting their independence in checkmating the excesses of lawless and dictatorial presidents. The rulings have evolved due to constitutional changes from the anachronistic British parliamentary system of governance to the American presidential system, and unlike the French system that most of the francophone African countries have adopted of a President and a Prime Minister. In almost all the former French colonized African countries, a president is elected who then appoints a prime minister who then appoints the ministers, of course with the expressed permission and approval of the president. (Read the rest of article below)
The 2005 dismissal of Deputy President Jacob Zuma by President Thabo Mbeki is a case in point. Jacob Zuma is a very popular figure in South Africa; so his firing could have generated a great crisis in the country, but it didn’t happen. On Tuesday, June 14, 2005, President Mbeki in a dramatic move announced that he had relieved Jacob Zuma of his responsibilities as Deputy President. The dismissal had occurred after the trial of Mr. Zuma’s financial adviser, Schabir Shaik, which appeared to have implicated the deputy president in corruption. Mbeki had said that he was taking the decision to defend South Africa’s “young democracy.” Said he to a special sitting of parliament, “In the interest of the honourable deputy president, the government, our young democratic system and our country, it would be best to release the honourable Jacob Zuma from his responsibilities as deputy president of the republic and member of the cabinet.” Mr. Mbeki also emphasized that Mr. Zuma must be presumed innocent. Of course, at that time, most people had assumed that Zuma was the heir apparent to succeed Mbeki, who has made it clear that he would not run for a third term. In reacting to his dismissal, Zuma had this to say, “I believe [Mbeki] has taken this decision not because he believes I am guilty of any crime but because of considerations relating to the constraints within which government operates.” It is the mutual understanding and respect that these two individuals had for each other that made the dismissal less of an issue than it would have been. Of course, the South African courts have proceeded to dismiss the charges against Mr. Zuma, including the most egregious – that of raping a woman who is HIV positive but of which Zuma termed consensual sex. But the courts’ rulings had nothing to do with the upholding or abrogation of the constitutional provisions of the country. Now, we come to the case of two countries which have abandoned the anachrostic British system and which seem to have modeled their constitutions after the American system, including one of the tiniest countries in Africa, Malawi, and the most populous, Nigeria, whose population appear to have ballooned to 140 million in the current census results just announced, twice the population of 1991. In both countries, the Presidents have dismissed their Vice Presidents, who were elected with them into office, for different reasons. Unlike that of the South African dismissal of Zuma in a rather “friendly” manner, these two dismissals were as a result of acrimonious relationships. Without going into much analysis of the U.S. constitution, suffice it to say that the Vice President elected with the President, members of the cabinet as well as the judiciary appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, could only be removed from office through impeachment, but in most cases cabinet members prefer to “resign” rather than be dismissed, hence we are always reading of the President accepting the “resignation” of so and so cabinet member. In the case of Malawi, President Bingu wa Mutharika on Thursday, February 9, 2006, announced on state radio that he had dismissed his Vice President Cassim Chilumpha, among other reasons, for “arrogance, abrogating on his constitutional duties and violating his oath of office.” The President had also alleged that the vice-president was trying to run a parallel administration. The interesting thing about this case, is that both Dr. Mutharika and Mr. Chilumpha belonged to the same party, the United Democratic Front (UDF), which was founded by former President Bakili Muluzi, who though had had violent disagreements with Mutharika, nevertheless picked him to replace him and campaigned vigorously for him. This was after the voters in Malawi had, in a referendum, rejected Mr. Muluzi’s attempts to change the constitution and run for a third term. But no sooner did Mutharika take office than he reopened his disagreements with Mr. Muluzi, including launching investigations of the former president for corruption, in his so-called anti-corruption crusade, and accused members of his party of sabojating his efforts. Mutharika resigned from the United Democratic Front and then founded his own party, the Democratic Progressive Party, without resigning as President of the country. Attempts were then made to remove him through impeachment, which didn’t succeed because of court rulings. In reaction to his alleged dismissal by the President, Mr. Chilumpha had this to say, “”As far as I am concerned I can only leave this office through impeachment, resignation or my death and none of those things has happened so I am still the elected vice-president of this republic.” Before we bring in the rulings of the Malawian courts, let’s examine the goings-on in Nigeria where the Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo, announced on Saturday, December 23, 2006, that he had sacked his Vice President Abubakar Atiku. The sack is as a result of a long feud between Obasanjo and Atiku. In the latter part of 2005, Nigerians were surprised to learn that President Obasanjo was plotting to remain in office, which he neither denied nor confirmed. According to sources then, Mr. Obasanjo had hinted Mr. Atiku of his ambition and asked for his support, which allegedly Mr. Atiku refused to give, after which Obasanjo went on national television and accused Atiku of disloyalty. Meanwhile, the plot for Obasanjo to remain in office after his second term, which ends on May 29, 2007, was going full swing. His denials had turned to “if it is the wish of God that I should remain in office,” to “if the constitution allowed me to remain in office.” But while Obasanjo was campaigning to remain in office after the abrogation of the constitution, Mr. Atiku equally was vociferous in campaigning against the president running for a third-term. Obasanjo’s ruling political party, of which Mr. Atiku was one of the foundation members, initially refused to acquiesce into Obasanjo’s ambitions for a third-term, but later changed to endorse his ambition. However, on Tuesday May 16, 2006, Obasanjo’s third-term ambitions were dealt a decisive and crushing defeat by members of the Nigerian Senate which had voted to reject the attempts to amend the Nigerian constitution so that President Obasanjo could run for a third-term. But rather than rising in magnanimity above this shameful attempt to scuttle the Nigerian constitution, as well as the mandate of the new charter of the African Union, of which he supposedly played a major role in crafting, Obasanjo has decided to play god. But God himself doesn’t look kindly to those who try to act like Him. History looks at people who have tried to play god, and it hasn’t been very kind to them, including Hitler, Muossulini, Idi Amin, Emperor Bokassa, and coming to Nigeria, Sani Abacha. Abacha played god, he played god when he arrested Obasanjo and clamped him into prison without just cause. There were praise singers and sycophants then who egged him on. There are also many praise singers and sycophants just as in Abacha’s time who are egging on Obasanjo on his destructive path to avenge the defeat of his third-term ambitions. There were individuals who were hollering and screaming about Abacha being the best god Nigeria could have, just as you have individuals who are hailing Obasanjo as the best thing that could happen to Nigeria, despite what he is trying to do to the country. The individual who has borne the Obasanjo vengeance and vindictive retaliation has become his vice president, Abubakar Atiku. Just like the dictatorial and diabololical Abacha hounded him, Obasanjo has employed all arms of the government to hound Atiku, who is not a saint by any means, but nevertheless an individual who stood steadfastly with the Nigerian people in opposition to Obasanjo’s third term ambitions, including using a flimsy letter to set up an inquisition by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to level charges of misappropriating more than $120 million of government funds, having the Peoples Democratic Party, of which Obasanjo had no hand in founding, expelling Atiku who was one of the foundation members of the party, and finally on December 23, 2006, announcing to the Nigerian people that he had sacked the vice president and declared the office vacant. The basis being that Atiku has declared to run for the presidency in Nigeria’s upcoming elections in 2007 from another political party, forgetting that the ruling People’s Democratic Party had expelled him. Let’s remember that in Malawi the President changed party without resigning. Dictatorially and lawlessly, without waiting for a court ruling, Obasanjo has proceeded to deny and withdraw all the entitlements of the office of the vice president, including his security detail, his staff, and just as during Abacha, there is the rumor that Obasanjo has given directive that Atiku should be arrested on his return from a vacation in the United States. But for whatever reason, Obasanjo has now gone to the Nigerian courts and enjoining them to validate his illegal action. So, we have two similar cases of constitutional quagmire of lawless and dictatorial presidents taking the law into their own hands, but fortunately for the continent, African judges seem to be rising to the challenge. On December 29, 2006, a Malawi High Court ruled that President Bingu Wa Mutharika cannot dismiss Vice President Cassim Chilumpha. The court also ruled that Vice President Chilumpha could only be removed from office after being indicted, that the process of impeachment is followed to remove him in Parliament. With this verdict, President Mutharika has again already started referring to Chilumpha as vice president. As Atiku of Nigeria has filed his challenge to Obasanjo’s actions in Nigeria based on the same constitutional provisions as that used by Vice President Chilumpha, and as we await the verdict, it feels good to note that some African judges are beginning to exercise their independence and not use the paper on which their respective constitutions are written as weapons for excretion.
Article 2: NIGERIA’S OBASANJO: WHEN IS CORRUPTION NOT CORRUPTION?
African Sun Times, Feb. 12, 2007 Snippett, “Given the above, it is time that Nigerians stop President Obasanjo from continuing to orchestrate this charade of being a champion of anti-corruption. He needs to come clean, and own up to his hands being as dirty as those he has accused, or at least, in the main, stop insulting the intelligence of Nigerians with this ballyhooed and hollow sloganeering of being an anti-corruption champion. If Nuhu Ribadu, who had earlier been acclaimed for his steadfastness in rooting out corruption, wants to retain any iota of credibility, he should charge Obasanjo with corruption. It is not enough to pretend that he is ‘investigating’ the president. He already has enough wrong-doings to charge the President with corruption. Or if he is pressured from doing so, resign his post in protest. There should never be a time when corruption should not be seen as corruption, whether it involves President Obasanjo or anybody else.”
Article 3 African Sun Times, Feb. 8, 2010 OBASANJO’S TRANSGRESSIONS AGAINST NIGERIA AND NIGERIANS
Obasanjo has no honor and none should be bestowed on him. His transgressions against Nigeria and Nigerians, when the history of this period is written, will be adjudged one of the worst periods in Nigeria. It is time that Obansajo keeps his opinions to himself about the affairs of the country…. As I have written many times, former President Olusegun Obasanjo is a very vindictive individual. Obasanjo hates Nigeria and Nigerians for what they did to him in 2006 – deny him his well-orchestrated grab for power to stay in office for a third-term. In 2006, Obasanjo decided to play god and he played god, aided assiduously by his hand-picked puppet Nuhu Ribadu of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), who viciously used the authority of the Commission to carry out Obasanjo’s diabolical program against those whom he felt betrayed him, by letting loose Ribadu on his opponents and scaring them away through accusations of financial malfeasance. It pains to see Nigerians trying to turn Nuhu Ribadu into a martyr after what he perpetuated on Nigerians in aiding Obasanjo, and hopefully with the current crisis in the country, Nigerians would come to view Nuhu Ribadu with the true judgment he deserves.

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