Atiku: Clash of Interest between Afenifere And Obasanjo

Nigeria News takes a look at the clash Atiku Abubakar’s presidential ambition may cause between former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the Pan Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere.

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is a man of a letter. He has written a few books, some of which are controversial. I think this is why Obasanjo is thick. He hardly forgets things. He gives details but has been accused of painting himself as a saint in most of his works.

In his book, “My Watch”, he gave details of how his vice, Atiku Abubakar sought his seat and how he was able to cut the former vice president into size, using his military background and native intelligence.

One thing that was so resonating about Atiku in Obasanjo’s book is the former vice president’s alleged greed for money and believe that cash could do all things.

Obasanjo is yet to forgive Atiku and would always campaign against his presidential ambition. The former president had never supported his subordinate.

But now that Obasanjo does not want the incumbent president Muhammadu Buhari to return for the second term and his arch-enemy, Atiku has emerged as the presidential candidate of the main opposition party, PDP, what happens?

It is obvious that the next Nigeria president can only come out of these two northerners of Fulani extraction. Of course, Obasanjo’s pronouncement on any of them matters little now but his endorsement of Atiku will go a long way in settling the old discord and redefine the minds of many electorates to want to vote for the former vice president in 2019.

The Pan-Yoruba Socio-political group, Afenifere had met with Atiku. The group had shown that it would not support Buhari reelection. The group had been clamouring for national restructuring, which of course is now been championing by Atiku.

Yes, the All Progressives Congress promised to restructure the country, the party changed beat as soon as it got to power. Afenifere believes that the only way to rescue Nigeria out of the current economic quagmire is restructuring and will give its support to whosoever that will implement the recommendation of the last constitutional conference organized by former President Goodluck Jonathan.

To ensure that it garner supports for Atiku, which is steadily becoming a new bride to Afenifere, the group visited Obasanjo in Abeokuta, Ogun State to sell the former vice president.

This is where the issue becomes tougher because Obasanjo is not an advocate of restructuring. He actually threw away the document prepared by Atiku on restructuring during his first term between 1999 and 2003.

And coming again to embrace the document he never wanted would be a tall order for Obasanjo. I do not see Obasanjo agreeing with Afenifere on this issue and it is like reminding him of the many sins of Atiku against him.

Can Obasanjo forgive Atiku? yes of course? Can he support Atiku’s presidency? It is a question only Obasanjo can answer. The former president has always believed he knows more than all the members of Afenifere put together.

So, bringing Atiku to Obasanjo will draw a new battle line between him and Afenifere.

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Sunday AKINFENWA

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