How AD govs, Afenifere saved Obasanjo from impeachment in 2002 — Osoba

ALMOST 17 years after moves to impeach former President Olusegun Obasanjo from office failed, former governor of Ogun State then, Chief Olusegun Osoba, has narrated how he and the other five governors from the South-West elected on the ticket of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) frustrated the bid.

In his reminiscence contained in the book, Battlelines: Adventures in Power, Osoba said the governors, together with the AD caucus in the National Assembly then, moved swiftly to abort the plot, despite the love lost between Obasanjo and AD/Afenifere, the Pan-Yoruba organisation, Afenifere.

The House of Representatives under the leadership of Speaker Umar Ghali Na’Abba had initiated the impeachment process against Obasanjo over allegations of constitutional infractions.

Both Obasanjo and Osoba are from Ogun State.

Osoba explained that their decision to save Obasanjo was neither borne out of ethnic solidarity nor prompting by Obasanjo but because of the enormous sacrifice Nigerians paid to have the civil rule.

“Everyone knew that there was no love lost between governors of Afenifere/AD and President Obasanjo. Even though we did not want the relationship between the state and the Federal Government to be antagonistic, we were not Obasanjo’s friends in any way.

“I never had any one-on-one private meeting with him throughout the four years he was in office. All the AD governors too were not Obasanjo’s friends. The AD governors were committed strictly to implementing the programme of our party,” Osoba stated.

The former governor and chieftain of the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) also gave details concerning the core terms of the accord Obasanjo entered into with the Afenifere and AD governors in his desperate bid to secure the second term in office and how the former Nigerian leader reneged on the agreement.

The book is billed for public presentation on July 8.

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