Samuel Awoyinfa, Abeokuta
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has urged the former Governor of Sokoto State, Attahiru Bafarawa, to pursue his dream of making Nigeria better if elected president in 2019.
Bafarawa is one of the presidential hopefuls on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party for the 2019 election.
Obasanjo also said that no amount of threats and intimidation will make him abandon his clamour for a better Nigeria.
The ex-president said this on Sunday while receiving Attahiru Bafarawa, who had visited Obasanjo to consult him concerning his (Bafarawa’s) presidential ambition.
Bafarawa came with members of his campaign organisation and political associates.
Obasanjo, who noted that no right thinking Nigerian would be satisfied with the current situation in the country, said he had made sacrifices for the nation, fighting to defend the country during the civil war and even being sent to jail over a phantom coup allegation, stressing that he would continue to make sacrifices.
The former president said he had been threatened and intimidated because of his convictions for a better Nigeria, but he said “they had all amounted to nothing.”
He argued that before he took any decision, he sought divine guidance and would take such decision in the overall interest of all Nigerians.
He called on Bafarawa, who is one of the presidential hopefuls on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, to pursue his dream of making Nigeria better if elected president in 2019.
He said, “The situation of Nigeria today is not the one any right-thinking Nigerian should applaud. And my own strong belief is that Nigeria deserves better than we have now. And we can get better than what we have.
“And so, you are to see what you can do, that is why you are aspiring to make Nigeria better than what it is today.
“Nobody who loves Nigeria will not want it to be better than it is today. I, definitely, have made personal sacrifices and I will make again. Talk of fighting in the war front and shedding of one’s blood, or even talk of going to prison, because I believe in democracy.
“I went to prison for doing nothing wrong. I have also been intimidated and threatened. What would you do to intimidate somebody like me? Whatever you are trying to do to me, people have tried them to me in the past, and it amounted to nothing and it will amount to nothing.
“Because before I act, I pray to God to guide me and I think of Nigeria first, particularly majority of Nigerians who are underprivileged, whose situation we need to improve upon.”
He called on Nigerians to remain resolute in their quest for better nation, advising that they should shun divisive tendencies.
He added, “If we do not act together as we should act together, Nigeria will not be what it should be, come 2019.
“Aspiration? Yes, but the objective must be clear. If the opposition starts going in different directions and pulling in different ways, Nigerian situation will not change.
“A population of 200 million, for us to continue to complain that things are not right, we are doing the same thing like we have done before.
“And if we keep doing the same thing, the result will not be different. If we want a different result, we must do things differently. And I believe we can do things differently.”
Obasanjo who described Bafarawa as a detribalised Nigerian, said Nigerians should see themselves in this light if they really want a new Nigeria.