Immediate past President, Goodluck Jonathan, slammed ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo for attempting to alter the constitution to secure a third term bid even as he lampooned President Muhammadu Buhari’s war against corruption, adding that the latter was a sham.
Jonathan, who was speaking in New York on Thursday, dismissed Obasanjo’s denial that he did not nurture a third term ambition, stating emphatically that the former president initiated moves and agitated for it but failed in the bid.
In apparent contrast between him and Obasanjo, Jonathan said, “Of course, I was a governor at that time but due to strong resistance from the National Assembly, the third term bid failed.”
On the current corruption campaign especially targeted at his lieutenants, Jonathan, who was a guest of the U.S National Democratic Institute, NDI, said “Corruption is now used for political campaign, during the first visit of President Buhari to the United States, he said that about $150billion was lost to corruption, though he didn’t mention me, he said by previous administration.”
“The figures are staggering and untrue, another governor said someone stole a million barrel of oil per day,” he said, insisting that though he would not join issues with the new government, but the figures are staggering and untrue.
He regretted that African governments lacked strong institution, a situation that he said has necessitated strong personnel who imposed untenable character on their nations and thus failed to impact positively on the lives of their people.
“Changing constitutions to eliminate term limits in order to favour incumbents is inconsistent with democratic principles and reduces confidence in democratic institutions.”
Further, Jonathan argued that repressive actions by some of these leaders is setting “a disturbing precedent for the region and continent,” and noted that it was not a sustainable path.
He announced that he would be setting up a Goodluck Jonathan Foundation to address these issues and mediate in the continent.
The event, which was moderated by U.S former deputy Secretary of State for Africa, Ambassador Johnnie Carson, now a USIP Senior Advisor to President Obama and member, NDI Board of Directors, had in attendance U.S Policy makers, think-tanks, members of Congress, and U.S government officials.
Only recently, Jonathan led a team of UN observer mission to Tanzania to observe the just concluded presidential election.

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