Why Obasanjo described President Jonathan as a “weak leader”, Boko Haram, Odi, etc

Nigeria's President-Goodluck-Jonathan-and-former-President-Obasanjo_at PDP event

Why Obasanjo described Jonathan as a “weak leader”, Boko Haram, Odi, etc

By Chido Nwangwu

• Follow us Twitter.com/Chido247Facebook.com/USAfricaChido n Facebook.com/USAfrica247

USAfrica & USAfricaonline.com: In an indirect swipe at Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan, the man who handpicked him to become vice President (in 2007) and supported him to be elected leader of the country (in 2011), former President and retired army General Olusegun Obasanjo has in

Nigeria’s President-Goodluck-Jonathan-and-former-President-Obasanjo_at PDP event

November 2012 characterized Jonathan as a “weak leader” who allows problems to grow without any decisive response.

I note that retired General Obasanjo who sees himself like many in his ruling PDP and across Nigeria as a leader eager to bring the forceful, punitive weight of state power to most issues drew a sharp line further away from Jonathan’s evidently more laid back approach, arguing “if you say you don’t want a strong leader who can have all characteristics of leaders including God fearing, then have a weak leader and the rest of the problem is yours.”

In continuing the contrast, Obasanjo directly compared Jonathan’s back-and-forth approach to his own government’s blanket, iron-fist massacre and assault on the Ijaw town of Odi (in Jonathan’s home state of Bayelsa) on November 20, 1999 concerning the killings of 12 police officers on November 4, 1999.
“I sent soldiers to a place and 19 of them were killed. If I had allowed that to continue, I will not have authority to send security whether police, soldier and any force any where again. So, I had to nip it in the bud and that was the end of that particular problem….”

Obasanjo especially cited what he considers Jonathan’s failings in tackling the menace, killings and security challenges posed by the radical Islamic sect Boko Haram across northern region of Nigeria.

He pointed to what he considers the lack of strong and decisive response to Boko Haram by Jonathan; adding that “my fear at that time (Boko Haram raised their case/challenge) is still my fear till today. When you have a sore and fail to attend to it quickly, it festers and grows to become something else…. Whichever way, you just have to attend to it. Don’t leave it unattended to. On two occasions I had to attend to the problem I faced at that time” — a part reference to his sending soldiers to “deal” with the gang who killed security officers and send a very harsh message to the people in Odi whose homes were also burnt down and several civilians killed.
Human Rights Watch concluded that “the soldiers must certainly have killed tens of unarmed civilians and that figures of several hundred dead are entirely plausible” in its report of December 1999 titled “The Destruction of Odi and Rape in Choba.”

Another telling aspect of Obasanjo’s remarks at the 40th anniversary of charismatic Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor’s “call to ministry” at the Word of Life Bible Church, Warri in Delta State of Nigeria emerged when he argued that “the beauty of democracy is that power rests in the people, and every elected person would seek your votes to come back; if you don’t want him, he won’t come back.” My political science translation of this comment: Obasanjo is making it clear, he will not support President Jonathan’s possible, likely quest for another term in office or what Nigerians artfully call “tenure elongation.”
It is important to note these words from the multimillionaire farmer Obasanjo: “if you say you don’t want a strong leader who can have all characteristics of leaders including God fearing.”
My translation of Obasanjo’s point: evidently, his subtle way of saying to Nigerians, since you rejected my quest for an unconstitutional third term between 2002-2003, I gave you the late President Umar Yar’Adua, a medically unhealthy and frail man with a very modest, non-aggressive reserved vice President Goodluck Jonathan! And, he reminds us “then have a weak leader and the rest of the problem is yours.”
Therefore, it is reasonable to say Obasanjo knew the “problems” he handed off to Nigerians for rejecting in 2003 his unpopular, masked, expensive and failed quest to govern Nigerians, again, and against their consent.

Yet, love him or dislike him, I respect Obasanjo for always speaking his mind; even if his comments are largely self-serving some of them are realistic.
Nigeria,we hail thee…!                                                                                                                                                  •Dr. Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica, CLASSmagazine, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com, Nigeria360 e-group and recipient of several journalism and public policy awards, was recently profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news projects for Africans and Americans. http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn

USAfrica and USAfricaonline.com (characterized by The New York Times as the most influential African-owned, U.S-based multimedia networks) established May 1992, our first edition of USAfrica magazine was published August 1993; USAfrica The Newspaper on May 11, 1994; CLASSmagazine on May 2, 2003; www.PhotoWorks.TV in 2005. wireless: 832-45-CHIDO (24436). Office: 713-270-5500. e-mail: USAfrica247@USAfricaonline.com.

————–

Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, USAfricaonline.com and the Nigeria360 e-group. http://usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/ : IF any of the Nigerian President’s 100 advisers has the polite courage for the extraordinary task of reminding His Excellency of his foremost, sworn, constitutional obligation to the national interest about security and safety of Nigerians and all who sojourn in Nigeria, please whisper clearly to Mr. President that I said, respectfully: Nigerians, at home and abroad, are still concerned and afraid for living in what I call Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. FULL text of commentary at USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/

Obama’s Africa agenda, our business and democracy. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfricaonline.com and CLASS magazine and The Black Business Journal

WHY I CELEBRATE THE LIFE AND WORKS OF NELSON MANDELA. By Chido Nwangwu  http://usafricaonline.com/2010/07/15/mandela-why-i-celebrate-his-life-works-by-chido-nwangwu/

USAfrica: Awolowo’s Starvation Policy against Biafrans and the Igbo requires apology not attacks on Achebe. By Francis Adewale.

 

Why Chinua Achebe, the Eagle on the Iroko, is Africa’s writer of the century. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, and first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/chido.achebebest.html

 

How and Why Romney beat Obama in first presidential debate. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica. http://usafricaonline.com/2012/10/03/how-and-why-romney-beat-obama-in-first-presidential-debate-by-chido-nwangwu/

Jonathan’s Boko Haram problem and firing of Ringim. By Chido Nwangwu
http://usafricaonline.com/2012/01/25/jonathans-boko-haram-problem-and-firing-of-ringim-by-chido-nwangwu/

Related insight: USAfrica’s October 17, 2001 special report/alert: Nigeria’s bin-Laden cheerleaders could ignite religious war, destabilize Africa. By USAfrica’s Publisher Chido Nwangwuhttp://usafricaonline.com/chido.binladennigeria.html

http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=USAfrica+Chido+Nwangwu+al-qaeda+terrrorism+nigeria&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

http://usafricaonline.com/tag/al-qaeda/

• For seasoned insights and breaking news on these issues, log on to USAfricaonline.com and USAfrica powered e-groups including USAfrica at googlegroupsFollow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChidoFacebook.com/USAfrica247 n Twitter.com/Chido247 


USAfrica: As Egypt’s corrupter-in-chief Mubarak slides into history’s dustbin.  By Chido Nwangwuhttp://usafricaonline.com/2011/01/30/chido-nwangwu-as-egypt-corrupter-in-chief-mubarak-slides-into-historys-dustbin-egyptians-not-waiting-for-obama-and-united-nations/

Related and prior reporting on the Jos crises on USAfrica, click here: http://usafricaonline.com/2011/08/16/10-killed-in-renewed-violence-near-jos/

News archives related to Jos, here http://usafricaonline.com/?s=jos

310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com  on  July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html

http://www.groundreport.com/World/310-killed-by-Nigerias-talibans-in-Bauchi-Yobe-n-M/2904584

Trump looks foolish and crazy screaming about Obama’s birth certificates, college records and Muslim connection. By Raynard Jackson

310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com  on  July 28, 2009.

www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html

Why Chinua Achebe, the Eagle on the Iroko, is Africa’s writer of the century. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, and first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/chido.achebebest.html

——-

VIDEO of the CNN International broadcast/profile of USAfrica and CLASSmagazine Publisher Chido Nwangwuhttp://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn

USAfrica: As Egypt’s corrupter-in-chief Mubarak slides into history’s dustbin.  By Chido Nwangwuhttp://usafricaonline.com/2011/01/30/chido-nwangwu-as-egypt-corrupter-in-chief-mubarak-slides-into-historys-dustbin-egyptians-not-waiting-for-obama-and-united-nations/

Tunisia, Egypt . . . Is Nigeria next? By Prof. Rosaire Ifedi           http://usafricaonline.com/2011/02/13/tunisia-egypt-is-nigeria-next-by-prof-rosaire-ifedi/

In the light of an icon, my mentor Stanley Macebuh (1942-2010)By Chido Nwangwu  http://usafricaonline.com/2011/03/07/stanley-macebuh-tribute-by-chido-nwangwu/  

Follow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChidoFacebook.com/USAfrica247 n Twitter.com/Chido247

—- 

• Nigeria’s bin-Laden cheerleaders could ignite religious war, destabilize Africa. By USAfrica’s Publisher Chido Nwangwuhttp://usafricaonline.com/chido.binladennigeria.html http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=USAfrica+Chido+Nwangwu+al-qaeda+terrrorism+nigeria&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8 http://usafricaonline.com/tag/al-qaeda/ 310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com  on  July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html http://www.groundreport.com/World/310-killed-by-Nigerias-talibans-in-Bauchi-Yobe-n-M/2904584

Jonathan’s Boko Haram problem and firing of Ringim. By Chido Nwangwu http://usafricaonline.com/2012/01/25/jonathans-boko-haram-problem-and-firing-of-ringim-by-chido-nwangwu/

Related and prior reporting on the Jos crises on USAfrica, click here: http://usafricaonline.com/2011/08/16/10-killed-in-renewed-violence-near-jos/

News archives related to Jos, here http://usafricaonline.com/?s=jos 310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com  on  July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html http://www.groundreport.com/World/310-killed-by-Nigerias-talibans-in-Bauchi-Yobe-n-M/2904584

 

Trump looks foolish and crazy screaming about Obama’s birth certificates, college records and Muslim connection. By Raynard Jackson

Why Chinua Achebe, the Eagle on the Iroko, is Africa’s writer of the century. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, and first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/chido.achebebest.html

——

In the light of an icon, my mentor Stanley Macebuh (1942-2010). By Chido Nwangwu  http://usafricaonline.com/2011/03/07/stanley-macebuh-tribute-by-chido-nwangwu/

The greatest Igbo ODUMEGWU OJUKWU’s great farewell in Aba. By Chido Nwangwu   http://usafricaonline.com/2012/02/28/the-greatest-igbo-odumegwu-ojukwu-farewell-in-aba-by-chido-nwangwu

USAfrica: Ikemba ODUMEGWU OJUKWU’s farewell in Aba, today February 28, 2012, reflected a fitting tribute, historically meaningful celebration, proper regard and deserving appreciation of the greatest Igbo, in my opinion, to have ever lived (like him or hate him).

I SALUTE Aba (aka Enyimba city), the robust and fearless town I was born, bred and raised, for giving the Ikemba, our Ochiagha, Gburugburu, Oka oburu uzo, dike na ndu ma n’onwu, mgbadike anyi, a hero’s farewell.

To the Ikemba, may your valiant soul rest in peace and dignity.

We will, and I, Chido Nwangwu, will never forget to continue to tell my generation and the next about your towering courage through tempest and thunder; through sorrow, pain, tears, blood…. •Dr. Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica multimedia networks, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com; and recipient of several journalism and public policy awards, was recently profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans. http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn.

News: At Ojukwu memorial in Dallas Texas, USAfrica’s Chido Nwangwu challenges the Igbo nation to say never again like Jews.

Ojukwu trouble and Ikemba titles. By Chido Nwangwu

• For seasoned insights and breaking news on these issues, log on to USAfricaonline.com and USAfrica powered e-groups including Nigeria360 at yahoogroups and USAfrica at googlegroups. Follow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido and Twitter.com/Chido247

Related Insights & Reports:

2 COMMENTS

  1. In other words Obasanjo is here claiming that he used his presidential powers to recommend to Nigerians that they vote for the Yar'Adua/Jonathan presidential ticket of 2007. Reading between the lines of his comments, he was conscious of the fact that then Governor Yar'Adua was a medically weak and frail individual, whom he sensed would be equally weak, and perhaps indecisive in making politically vibrant and robust decisions. And that the same goes for his right hand man, Goodluck Jonathan.
    This former President of Nigeria, if you read the "tea leaves" in his statement also said that he did what he did to punish Nigerians for rejecting his quest for a third term, eventhough he was a strong and "God fearing" President.
    From every indication, Obasanjo's concotions worked in his recommending to Nigerians a team of weak President and a Vice President, who later turned out to be a truly weak President.
    This perhaps says it all about Obasanjo, that he is truly selfish and indeed very vindictive.

  2. Why not indict Obasanjo for ordering the massacre of civilians? He has formally admitted it now, and is even bragging about it. The evidence is there, the confession is there.

    Are African authors and editors cut from a different and lacking stock of journalists? Do you think a reputable foreign journalist will treat this case of clear mass murder with "…Yet, love him or dislike him, I respect Obasanjo for always speaking his mind; even if his comments are largely self-serving some of them are realisti…"?

    No. .

iCOMMENT