Thursday 28 May 2015

Jonathan Finally ‘Ends Quarrel’ With Obasanjo

President Goodluck Jonathan seems to have
improved on his relationship with former
president, Olusegun Obasanjo, after sending
him a rare message of commiseration on the
death of his sister, Adunni Oluniola Eweje-
Obasanjo. Since Obasanjo’s letter to the
president went viral in December 2013, the
president stopped all forms of felicitation or
commiseration with the former head of state.

Before then, though, Jonathan had “nothing
but the greatest respect for Obasanjo” and he
had said he would not probe his benefactor.

“The president has nothing but the greatest
respect for Chief Obasanjo’s very notable
contributions to national growth and
development over many years and far from
taking offence or seeking retaliation, will
always welcome objective criticism and advice
from the very highly-regarded elder
statesman,” Reuben Abati, special adviser to
the president on media and publicity, wrote in

Evidence of a sour relationship between
the duo came to fore in December, when Abati,
speaking for Jonathan, said Obasanjo’s letter
was “mischievous, provocative and self-

Jonathan ordered his aides not to join issues
with the 78-year-old retired general, saying he
himself would respond appropriately.

president himself will, at the appropriate time,
offer a full personal response to the most
reckless, baseless, unjustifiable and indecorous
charges levied against him and his
administration by the former head of state.”

Jonathan conspicuously avoided sending public
wishes to Obasanjo on his birthdays in 2014
and 2015, against his tradition in the previous
years. In 2015, Jonathan sacked Martin Luther
Agwai as chairman of the Subsidy
Reinvestment Programme (SURE-P) for
preaching “change” at Obasanjo’s 78th
birthday in March. The latest commiseration
with Obasanjo suggests that the bad blood
between the two presidents has become

“The president joins Chief Obasanjo and his
family in mourning the late Madam Eweje-
Obasanjo who passed away recently at the age
of 76,” the commiseration message read in
part. “As they mourn her, President Jonathan
urges Chief Obasanjo and his family to be
consoled by the knowledge that his late sister
lived a worthy and very fulfilled life in the
service of her family and community.

“The President prays that God will grant Chief
Obasanjo and his family the fortitude to bear
the loss of Madam Eweje-Obasanjo. He
similarly prays that God will receive Madam
Eweje-Obasanjo’s soul and grant her eternal

Jonathan and Obasanjo both attended the last
council of states meeting, which Obasanjo had
boycotted since falling out with the outgoing

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