The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asked former President Olusegun Obasanjo to clarify his recent comments on regretting picking Atiku as vice-presidential candidate in 1999.
Obasanjo had, while addressing a leadership mentoring session with selected students in Abeokuta, Ogun state, on Saturday, said picking a running mate when he wanted to become Nigeria’s president in 1999 is one of the mistakes in his life.
“One thing that has happened to me is that God has never disappointed me and that is very important. For instance, one of the mistakes I made was picking a number two when I was going to become president,” Obasanjo said.
Atiku Abubakar, the PDP presidential candidate for the 2023 general election, was vice-president during the Obasanjo administration from 1999 to 2007.
However, speaking on Monday at a media briefing in Kaduna, Walid Jibrin,
chairman of the PDP board of trustees (BoT), asked the former president to clarify his statement within 48 hours.
“Our attention has been drawn to a statement said to have been made by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of Nigeria, that it was a mistake for him to have appointed Atiku Abubakar as the Vice President in 1999,” he said.
Jibrin said although Obasanjo did not specifically mention Atiku’s name, the report of what he told his audience was such that he was referring to former vice-president.
“Obasanjo should come out and clarify the statement — whether he was misquoted or he meant what he said,” Jibrin said.
“It is when he makes that clarification that the PDP will officially reply him.
“One can assume that what he said may be correct, but we want to give him time up till tomorrow (Tuesday) or next (Wednesday). If he comes out to say he had been misquoted or he meant what he said on Atiku, you will hear the bombardment and I will break the egg.
“I will also tell Nigerians and the whole world who Obasanjo is, how Atiku assisted him to rule Nigeria, and how Atiku refused his third term ambition.
“It is, therefore, very important that we hear from Obasanjo openly.”