Onwuasoanya FCC Jones
According to the publisher of Sahara Reporters and presidential candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC), Omoyele Sowore; former Nigerian Heads of State, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, Olusegun Obasanjo and Abdulsalami Abubakar are not only positively disposed to the Peter Obi/Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed candidacy, but are also actively canvasing support for the Labour Party presidential standard bearers.
Omoyele knows the significance of this alleged understanding among Nigeria’s former military leaders, but as one who sees himself as equal competitor with Peter Obi, he is bent on attempts to discredit this highly sought-after endorsement. He is trying to sway Nigerians by reminding them that these past leaders made efforts to derail our democracy, hence, Nigerians should view their support for Obi with suspicion. The truth is that Sowore or any other presidential candidate will pay anything and forfeit anything just to have any of these men speak positively about their aspiration.
The College of Past Presidents or Heads of State is one of the most revered groups anywhere in the world, including, the most developed and liberal democracies. Any politician craves the endorsement of past leaders of his country the same way any show promoter would crave the endorsement of major rock stars for their shows.
Beyond the effect of their endorsements, there is also an unquantifiable technical or strategic advantage the endorsement of such caliber of people confer on the presidential candidate who is fortunate to secure it. If you paid keen attention to Biden’s inauguration speech as President, he took special care to announce to Americans the support he has received from all living former American Presidents, including sharing with the world the effort he made to visit the ailing, Jimmy Carter. The significance and power of these past Presidents is not affected by our opinions or reservations about them.
While it is unavoidable that an individual who has attained such heights of power and influence must make mistakes, we cannot deny the value of their services and patriotism to our country.
Generals Olusegun Obasanjo, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida and Abdulsalami Abubakar are eminent patriots who have given the most part of their lives to the service of the country. They are also more equipped with information about Nigeria’s peculiar challenges and the secrets to the management and preservation of our nationhood, than probably any other group of living Nigerians.
As responsible elder statesmen, they might have also determined that while they might have made some mistakes during their time in power, that at this twilight of their earthly existence, that they owe it to posterity to bequeath to Nigeria, a unifying, progressive and selfless leader, represented in the persons of Mr. Peter Obi and Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed.
Nigerians of good conscience have nothing but gratitude for these patriotic elder statesmen who have come forward at this critical time in our national history to promote the right idea for the stabilization and progress of our nation.
May Nigeria Prevail!
Photo: L-R: Mr. Peter Obi, Labour Party presidential candidate and Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, former Nigeria’s Head of State.
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