Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Sunday said he would not sit on the fence or be neutral in next year’s general elections.
In a statement by Kehinde Akinyemi, his media aide, Mr Obasanjo emphasised his commitment to a change of a government he thinks has hindered the economic development of the country.
The former president, who already declared his support for the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar, denied media reports that he had decided not to support any candidate for next year’s presidential election.
The statement explained that Mr Obasanjo’s comment during a recent function in Owu, Ogun State did not suggest his neutrality, asserting, “Only a fool will sit on the fence or be neutral when his or her country is being destroyed by incompetence, corruption, lack of focus, insecurity, nepotism, brazen impunity and denial of the obvious.”
“It is disingenuous, if not malicious, for anyone to suggest that Chief Obasanjo was being neutral when he chose not to use the Owu Convention as a platform for political campaign but instead adopt a communal and familial approach in talking to members of his Owu family.
“For the records, and as accurately reported by some media organisations, what the former president said at the convention in Iwo was that while he would not impress any candidates on them, Nigerians should vote for credible candidates who will drive growth and development and make their lives better than it is now.
“Obasanjo is no such fool nor is he so unwise.”
It said the former president urged Nigerians to stop complaining about their current situation and advised that they should go out to get “beneficial change,” knowing that, “such change will not come if they remain inactive just complaining and complacent and they allow themselves to be deceived by sycophants and enemies of Nigeria.”
It quoted the former president, “If they do not become active and get much needed change of the current administration to a government that will improve the economy, regain the confidence of investors and generally drive growth, development and economic progress with security, what is coming will be much worse than what Nigerians currently suffer.”
He said he would continue to speak against poor governance and nobody should manipulate his stance on the 2019 presidential election.