Lieutenant General Alani Akinrinade (retd), a former Chief of Army Staff, has urged Nigerians to ignore comments of ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo who belongs in the “dustbin of history”.
The army general also said it is an insult to Nigerians, that Obasanjo will ask that they vote for Atiku Abubakar, the PDP presidential candidate.
In an advertorial published in The Punch newspaper on Thursday, he challenged the media to focus on its job as “the fourth estate of the realm” and endeavour to keep people in their place, and not give them unnecessary publicity.
His words: “The Nigerian media appear to have forgotten they are indeed the fourth estate of the realm. They are gatekeepers. They owe Nigeria the responsibility of keeping this irritable man where he belongs — the waste bin of history.
“Like his daughter, Iyabo, reminded him in her letter, Nigeria does not belong to him. He should allow Nigerians choose who they want and stop goading the citizenry for his own selfish interests.
“Olusegun Obasanjo asking Nigerians to vote for Atiku Abubakar is an insult to our collective intelligence. With the benefit of hindsight, can anyone truly say Obasanjo’s sense of judgment in choosing leaders can be trusted?
“Take a good look at history. Through the clandestine manoeuvres in 1979, he foisted on Nigeria a reluctant Shehu Shagari at the expense of the cerebral Obafemi Awolowo or Nnamdi Azikiwe. After his second coming, he so manipulated the electoral system that he fraudulently installed an unhealthy Umaru Yar’Adua as President alongside another reluctant character in the person of Goodluck Jonathan as the deputy.
“He denied every interested member of his party while employing all sorts of machination including threat and blackmail. Then came 2015; he told Nigerians Muhammadu Buhari is the best man for the job. As he has done to every Presidential candidate he installed or supported, a few years down the line, he says Buhari is unfit for the job again.”
Akinrinade berated Obasanjo for endorsing Atiku after taking a contrary position in the past, stating that “The Bible says something about such people- a double-minded man is unstable in his ways, James 1:8. Obasanjo is not a man whose judgement can be trusted.”