Ahamefula Ogbu and Yinka Olatunbosun
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo was yesterday at his theatrics as he symbolically stood up and serenaded the Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi to the seat he occupied and sat him there in a move considered an open endorsement by supporters of Obi.
The act of vacating his seat and asking Obi to take it over from him drew a lot of applause after which Obasanjo announced, “ehen, my job is done”.
At the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Award Night, Obasanjo who gave the keynote address at the event called for inclusiveness of the six geopolitical zones of the country which he said was vital in building a better Nigeria.
Both statesmen were at an event to celebrate a national award given to the President of the Africa Import Export Bank, Professor Benedict Oramah when Obasanjo vacated his seat for Obi before giving a short speech and exiting the event afterwards.
The video begins as Obasanjo is rounding off his speech, saying, “… the president of Nigeria…” while looking in Peter Obi’s direction.
Obasanjo went to Obi, he stood from his seat and shook hands with him before he jocularly led him to the table where he sat, offered his seat and walked away.
Obasanjo who spoke on ‘Touching the Stars’, at the awards night identified science, technology and innovation as the pathways to national development at the giving of three prizes namely, The Nigeria Prize for Science, The Nigeria Prize for Literature and The Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism.
“As a farmer, I am really impressed with the theme for this year’s Nigeria Prize for Science. Agric is the most ancient and proven industry. Agric is synonymous to human survival and development. Science and technology must influence food and security.”
Earlier, the advisory board for the Nigeria Prize for Science announced two most outstanding works titled Gains in Grain Yield of Released Maize (Zea Mays L.) Cultivars Under Drought and Well-Watered Conditions by Muhyideen Oyekunle and Shehu Ado; and Development of Process Plant for Plantain Flour by Sesan Peter Ayodeji and Emmanuel Olatunji Olutomilola as winners of the $100,000 prize money for the NLNG Prize for Science.
The Chairman of the Advisory board, Prof Barth Nnaji revealed that the decision was reached on the 2022 theme “Innovations in Sustainable Food Security.”
For the Nigerian Prize for Literary Criticism, the prize money was raised to $10,000 for the first time since 2018 when it was awarded to Prof. Isidore Diala. Sakiru Adebayo emerged as the 2022 winner.
The sum of $100,000 which is the mouth-watering grand prize of the night for the Nigeria Prize for Literature in the poetry category was won by Romeo Oriogun.