Nigeria’s former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has debunked rumour going around that he has fled the country ahead of the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday.
He cleared the air while speaking with journalists at his Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library residence, on Friday evening, said he wondered on what the rumour mongers tend to achieve with such a fake news.
Obasanjo said he could not afford to stay away at this critical time in the history of the nation, saying that he laid the foundation for democracy to thrive.
“I don’t know what they want to achieve by peddling that. Why should I run out of the country? I should be here for election because if anybody has laid the foundation of democracy in this country, I have.
“Then why should I be the one to run away for democracy? I should be here to encourage everybody to participate,” he added.
He promised to perform his civic responsibility as a true Nigerian who believes in a greater and better country, “adding I am here. If I’m alive and kicking, I will.”
The former President expressed concern over reports on the discovery of thumb-printed ballot boxes in Kano, on Thursday, Ondo and Ikorodu on the eve of the election.
He appealed to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to investigate the matter and adequately inform Nigerians
Obasanjo said, “I believe that tomorrow should be a red letter day for Nigerians; a day when we should be able to say we have again firmly stabilized our democracy. Although for me I still have some apprehension.
“If the news of already thumb-printed ballot papers in Kano yesterday; I’ve received news in Ondo today; I’ve received news from Ikorodu. If these are true, we haven’t had anything like this before. I don’t want to say, ‘Oh, have I not told you?’ But it is sad if they are true. And maybe, INEC would then have to tell us how did this happen. Maybe INEC would have an answer, and not only answer, a precaution against this tomorrow. Because if people are thumb-printing, obviously they want to make sure that those already thumb-printed ballot papers are used and if that happens, then it will make nonsense of all that INEC has prepared for and all that Nigerians are looking forward to.”