President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday faulted the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for not inviting a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godsay Orubebe, to the 2018 Democracy Day Lecture.
Mr Buhari regretted the oversight by the organisers for not inviting Mr Orubebe to come and listen to the lecture delivered by the then Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Attahiru Jega at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
Recall that during the 2015 general elections that produced Mr Buhari as the president of the country, Mr Orubebe attempted to disrupt the process, a development that triggered reactions and ridicule from different quarters.
During the collation of results in Abuja, the former minister nearly engaged Mr Jega into fisticuffs over what he described as an anomalous process.
DAILY NIGERIAN reports that this year’s Day has as its theme: “Peacebuilding and good governance for sustainable development.”
While making the observation, Mr Buhari also recollected the efforts of the then government of the United States, Barack Obama towards ensuring that the 2015 elections held.
He said: “Here I must digress to raise an observation by the programme organisers because I did not see Mr Orubebe who ought to have come and listen to professor Jega deliver his lecture, this is a major observation.
“That instance, for those of us who were lucky that there was light and we had the television to see the confrontation between Orubebe and prof Jega, it will remain a life impression to many of us.
“The other one is the prof Jega briefing to the government, the opposition and the military before the date of the election was finally agreed on.
“Prof Jega, as a professor, it was not surprising, briefed us of his activities between 2011 and 2015, the recruitment, equipping and training of INEC officials, that gave those of us who are lucky to get the report, the courage that nothing outside the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria would be accepted by the opposition.
“So, the question of an interim administration or postponing election for more than 90 days shouldn’t be on the table and I thank personally the United States government then under President Obama by sending John Kerry to read the riot act to the government and to us the opposition then that nothing other than a free and fair election will be acceptable.”