Following reports of former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s support for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP)’s Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the Presidency has flatly dismissed Obasanjo as irrelevant. It said that the former president’s comments are riddled with confusion and not worthy of the attention it seems to have garnered.
Backstory: Addressing journalists in Abuja on Wednesday, spokesperson to the president, Garba Shehu said the presidency is unbothered by the former president’s support for Atiku as he had changed his mind publicly on the matter several times during this campaign period, saying, “Former president Obasanjo denounces one person today and supports that same person the next day.”
Shehu also noted that the former president has a penchant for dragging religion into the conversation as the basis for his decision, saying, “When it pleases him, he brings God into the matter and uses that as his excuse for whatever position he has chosen.”
He further expressed a lack of surprise at the news of Obasanjo’s switch from neutrality which was widely publicized in the media, to a completely different stance soon after. “We have learnt not to take his utterances seriously anymore. We know that the slightest wind can make him change his mind again. After all, this is the same man who publicly tore his party registration card barely four years ago, and he now claims to be backing the same party.”
Bottom line: When it suits the presidency, they court Obasanjo’s endorsement, and when it suits them they dismiss him. Obasanjo may not be the most powerful politician right now but his endorsement still carries some weight.