Femi Ogbonnikan In Abeokuta
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has described as “evil minds” those discouraging the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in last month’s presidential election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, from seeking judicial redress at the election petition tribunal.
In a congratulatory letter dated Saturday, March 23, 2019, addressed to the PDP governorship candiddate in 2018 Osun election, Senator Ademola Adeleke, Obasanjo said those promoting the narrative were evil minds who were out looking for an excuse to unleash violence on Nigerians.
He said: “Those who have conceived and are promoting the narrative that if Atiku Abubakar continues to seek legal redress, there will be violence, are evil minds looking for excuse to unleash violence on Nigerians.
“At no time in the history has sustainable peace been built on theft, injustice, corruption and inequity. These merchants of chaos and violence should have no peace in any decent society. And they must know that no intimidation or prophesy of violence and doomsday will cow anybody.
“Nigeria belongs to all Nigerians. We will respect as friends those who believe that what is good for their country should be good for Nigeria.
“Yes, we are Africans, but we have values that are consistent with international standards.
“Court is part of our democratic process and it must be used when necessary if only to achieve justice, stability, unity and progress for our country”.
However, Obasanjo noted that “if Buhari could go to court three times to seek justice, even without reasonable cause, any Nigerian who feels denied of justice must feel free to go to court”.
According to him, “while I have refrained from commenting on the 2019 elections, because one of the parties has gone to court, may I point out, that those who call themselves our development partners and friends and preach, sacrificing justice on the altar of the so-called stability are enemies of justice, democracy and Nigeria. We will continue to sustain Nigeria in stability and unity on the altar of justice, equity, fairness, freedom, human rights and democracy. Stability can not be successfully built on injustice, corruption, inequity and divided nation and one-sidedness.
“Nigeria will match forward with or without those who will want to feed us with diet of values and actions, that are not acceptable in their own countries. Nigeria is of age”, said Obasanjo.
Besides, the former President who is in Dubai attending the global education and skills forum meeting, commended the tribunal for its courage in nullifying what he described as “clearly an illegality” in the Osun state governorship election petition tribunal verdict.
“This action by the judicial officers, albeit a first step in the legal process, gives renewed confidence in the judiciary at a time when there are coordinated efforts by some political leaders to undermine, if not destroy it.
“As I have repeatedly said, the world is watching with keen interest. What we do or do not do right in our electoral process will have implications, not just for Nigeria, but for Africa and indeed the world. By correcting what was clearly a desperate attempt to change the will of the Osun people, the tribunal has saved Nigeria from great embarrassment and started the process of saving and strengthening our democracy.
“This is the right and proper thing to do in any decent society.
“Going to court must be encouraged as some people are now attempting to do.
“I received the news of the judgement of the Osun state governorship election petition tribunal that declared Senator Ademola Adeleke, the candidate of the PDP, the winner of the 2018 governorship election in the state”, said Obasanjo.