Jigawa State Governor Sule Lamido had a closed-door meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday and hinted that stakeholders of the People’s Democratic Party will beg former President Olusegun Obasanjo who quit the party on Monday.
Addressing State House journalists after the meeting, Lamido, who is the North-West Coordinator of Goodluck/Sambo Presidential Campaign Council, said Obasanjo was more than a party man.
The governor said the party would however not disclose the reconciliation strategy to the media.
Chairman, PDP Board of Trustees, Tony Anenih, had on Monday said Obasanjo’s exit was not a loss to the party.
But Lamido described the former president as an icon, national symbol, inventor and creator of all institutions in the country at the moment.
Describing Obasanjo as a father of all, Lamido noted that the present crop of leaders, including Jonathan, were creations of the former president.
He said though the PDP might have failed to live up to Obasanjo’s expectations, abandoning the party was not the solution.
“Baba (Obasanjo) is more than a party man. He is an icon, a national symbol and a leader and an inventor, a creator of all the institutions today in Nigeria from the Presidency to the governors who are his own sons. All are his creations. And so, when a father is angry with his own children, we will only say we are sorry to him.
“But then, we cannot be renounced for whatever it is. If you do any political DNA of our blood, you would find his (Obasanjo’s) blood in us. No matter what we are, we may not be able to live up to his expectations. We might have made some mistakes, but abandoning us is not the solution because the country is first before anything else. So, he is our baba, even up to the president. Baba is our baba no matter what.”
On the claims by some PDP leaders that they would not miss Obasanjo, the governor said: “But then, the first child is the president, did he say so?”
Asked if he was not worried about Obasanjo’s consistent criticisms of Jonathan, Lamido responded thus: “What I’m saying is that all of us are parents. When we were born, they pepped us, gave us love and everything. By the time they get old, naturally, there is what they call role reversal. We became the parents and they became the children. So, what is wrong if our parents begin to manifest those signs of old age?”
On the feeling in some quarters that Obasanjo’s exit from the PDP would enhance the chances of the opposition, he said: “What is this opposition in Nigeria? You must know Nigeria’ history. Nigeria cannot be governed by an aggregate of pain, anger and frustration. And I’ve been saying that those called opposition who are now abusing us; whatever might have been our crime, it was that crime that made them. We created that for them to become either governors or legislators.
We created room for them to emerge. So, whatever they think is our evil, they’re the manifestations of the evil. Believe me, you don’t know Nigeria”.
Lamido said he did not doubt that the PDP would win the forthcoming general elections, describing the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) as an amalgamation of pain, anger and desperation. “And this country is too big for them”, he added.