By Daud Olatunji
ABEOKUTA – A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Chairman, Organisation and Mobilisation Committee of the party in the South West, Prince Buruji Kashamu, yesterday, said the wave of insurgency being witnessed in the North Eastern states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states started during the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Kashamu also said Obasanjo should have nipped Boko Haram in the bud when he was the President few years ago, saying, he chose to look away and down played the issue of sharia criminal codes.
While reacting to the statement credited to the ex-President that President Goodluck Jonathan has performed below average, Kashamu described Obasanjo’s comment as “self-serving, unjustifiable and totally unwarranted”.
Kashamu said, contrary to Obasanjo’s claims, Jonathan has performed above average and deserves a second term.
Obasanjo spoke weekend during an encounter with book writers in Abeokuta, Ogun State, as part of activities marking the popular Ake Festival.
When asked of his view on Jonathan’s administration, he said, “His performance is below average. I will not accept responsibility for his performance. There is nobody that gets such a position without being helped.”
The statement reads, “It is utterly nauseating how he catches on the slightest opportunity to publicly cast aspersion on the President Jonathan, with the intent of inciting the people against the President and swaying public opinion against him.
“If this occasional outburst is how he wants to regain his lost political relevance in the South West, then it would be counterproductive. We thank God that since he turned his back on the PDP, the party has been repositioned and we have been winning elections fair and square.
“It is high time Obasanjo is reminded that he is not the only former leader in this country. If he is not content with tending to his chicken and farm, at his age and level, he should commit himself to courses that would outlive him.
“He should be told to shed off the implacably cantankerous image that he has cut for himself and take on a more ennobling character trait. After all, the Yoruba would say “T’eyan ba dagba, o ma yogun ja ni (an aged person stops going to the battle field).
“Obasanjo should have nipped Boko Haram in the bud when he was the President but he looked away and down played it when some Northern states adopted the Sharia criminal codes saying it was “political sharia”, now, Boko Haram says it is fighting to have country governed with the same Sharia criminal codes…”
Kashamu said despite the orchestrated security challenges, the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration had achieved so much in various areas. He said the present administration has set Nigeria in the right direction making her to be one of the 26th largest economy in the world and the largest in Africa, with half a trillion naira Gross Domestic Product (GDP).