A former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, has stated that former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, “can never enjoy” his support for a political office, saying further that “If I support Atiku for anything, God will not forgive me.”
The erstwhile president is saying this on Friday – at a time when Atiku, his then vice, as made his intention known to contest for Nigeria’s highest position.
Atiku served as vice-president to Obasanjo from 1999 to 2007. He aspired to succeed Obasanjo in 2003 but the elder statesman went ahead to complete another term.
But in 2007, the duo fell apart, while Obasanjo’s alleged third term agenda was also said to have worsened their dispute.
In an exclusive interview with Premium Times, Obasanjo said he has no personal grudges against Atiku but only works with anyone “working for the good of Nigeria”.
“How can I be on the same side with Atiku?” Mr Obasanjo asked. “To do what?”
“If I support Atiku for anything, God will not forgive me. If I do not know, yes. But once I know, Atiku can never enjoy my support,” he was quoted as saying.
“I do not have personal grudges with anyone,” Mr Obasanjo said. “If you do not do well for Nigeria, you do not do well for all of us.”
“It is not a question of working with or not working with an individual,” he said. “If you are working for the good of Nigeria, I am working with you. If you are not working for the good of Nigeria it does not matter who you are I am not working with you.”
“If my children are getting married, he has sent representatives. If his children are getting married, I have sent representatives. That is social. That is not political,” he said, adding that “on political ground, my position has not changed. If I support Atiku for a political office other than the one I supported him in the past when I did not know him … God will not forgive me”.
Bear in mind that Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, had on Thursday said that Obasanjo “knelt down” before Atiku in a bid to clinch the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2003 election.