Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and some leaders of South-West region met in Lagos on Saturday to forge a common front to frustrate anti-democratic tendencies of the federal government.
A leader of the Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, who convened the meeting, invited key figures in the zone to the meeting which held at his Lekki home in Lagos, impressing on them the need to mend fences for the “battle” ahead.
Obasanjo and his entourage arrived at Adebanjo’s house at 10.40am for the meeting which held behind closed doors.
Obasanjo did not speak with journalists after the meeting, preferring to sit in his car while a few of the attendees spoke with newsmen.
Speaking briefly with journalists, Adebanjo said the gathering was nothing more than the fact that Nigeria must move forward.
He said, “All attempts to establish dictatorial tendencies in the country must be opposed. There must be unity to destroy mediocrity and dictatorship.
“What is important is that we have our common goal. We don’t have a candidate yet; not yet. We must agree first and any differences among us must be settled. If you are not united, you can’t fight a battle. The Yoruba man must put on his thinking cap.”
Also, the Serving Overseer of The Latter Rain Assembly, Pastor Tunde Bakare, who attended the meeting, said being outspoken about the happenings in the country shouldn’t make one an enemy of the state or the nation.
The cleric stated, “The thinker is the enemy of the mob. If you say I have been a critic of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, look at him now being a critic of Muhammadu Buhari too. Yet he facilitated his (Buhari) coming in (as President).
“Critique is not the same thing as criticism – it is let us reason together; things are not going the right way. That is all.”
Some of those who attended the meeting, apart from Obasanjo and Bakare, were the immediate past governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko; ex-Ogun State governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel; Emeritus Professor, Akin Mabogunje; a long-time associate of Obasanjo, Otunba Oyewole Fasawe; a former Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ogun State, Chief Joju Fadairo, Dr. Amos Akingba and Dr. Tunji Olaopa.
Others included a former General Secretary of Afenifere, Senator Femi Okunrounmu; Chief Abraham Akanle, Prof. Banji Akintoye, Dr. Tokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu, Chief Supo Sonibare, spokesman for the Afenifere, Mr. Yinka Odumakin; Obasanjo’s in-law, Chief Kenny Martins, and the spokesman for the former President-led coalition, Mr. Akin Osuntokun.
Also, on Saturday Obasanjo on Saturday visited the Ikoyi, Lagos home of the former national deputy chairman, Southwest of the Peoples Democratic Party, Bode George, to commiserate with him over the death of his son.
The younger George reportedly died on the 9th May, 2018.
The visit was however described as an end to the political rift between the duo by George’s family.
In a statement signed on his behalf by his media aide, Kehinde Akinyemi, Obasanjo led some top aides and loyalists to the residence of the former military administrator of Ondo State, where he urged him to take solace in God over the demise of the son.
He said, “We cannot query God, but to only take solace in what He has done to you.
“If this did not happen, who knows what next that will happen. I have not been around but it was on my mind to come over and commiserate with you and the family. May God grant the deceased eternal rest.”
However, the visit turned emotional when Bode George’s sister, Alhaja Majolagbe in her vote of thanks declared that the rift between the two was over with the visit.
She said, “We are all shocked when this started. But, today, devil has been put to shame. The evil this morning has been condemned outside this house. It will never come to these two great Nigerians anymore.
“There has come time again when my brother will find Ota his home. It is over, Allah take all thanks.”