Former President Olusegun Obasanjo in his statement over the outcome of the Osun election petitions tribunal judgment, expressed his support for former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to challenge the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in court.
Obasanjo who stated this in the personal statement signed by him dated March 23, 2019 with the title ‘Statement by Olusegun Obasanjo on the judgement of the Osun governorship election petitions tribunal, Dubai,’ said that even Buhari went to court three times without reasonable cause. Therefore, Atiku should also not be discouraged from contesting his loss at the tribunal.
Obasanjo further described those who called on Atiku not to challenge his defeat at the tribunal as ‘evil minds’.
“Nigeria is of age; and if Buhari could go to court three times to seek justice, even without reasonable cause, any Nigerian, who feels denied of justice must feel free to go to court.
“Those who have conceived and are promoting the narrative that if Atiku Abubakar continues to seek legal redress, there will be violence, are evil minds looking for excuse to unleash violence on Nigerians.
“At no time in history has sustainable peace built on theft, injustice, corruption and inequality.
“These merchants of chaos and violence should have no place in any decent society. And they must know that no intimidation or prophecy of violence and doomsday will cow anybody. Nigeria belongs to Nigerians.”
“We will respect as friends those who believe that what is good for their country should be good for Nigeria.
“Yes, we are Africans but we have values that are consistent with international standards.
“Court is part of our democratic process and it must be used when necessary if only to achieve justice, stability, unity and progress for our country.”
Obasanjo further hailed the outcome of the Osun Election Petitions Tribunal which sacked the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), incumbent Governor Gboyega Oyetola, and declared the Peoples Democratic Party candidate in the September 2018 Osun election, Ademola Adeleke, as winner of the contest.
“While I was in Dubai to attend the global education and skills forum meeting, I received the news of the judgement of the Osun State governorship election petitions tribunal declaring Senator Ademola Adeleke, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, the winner of the 2018 governorship election in the state.
“Let me take this opportunity to commend the tribunal for its courage in nullifying what was clearly an illegality.
“This action by the judicial officers, albeit a first step in the legal process, gives renewed confidence in the judiciary at a time when there are coordinated efforts by some political leaders to undermine, if not destroy it.”
“As I have repeatedly said, the world is watching events in Nigeria with keen interest.
“What we do or do not do right in our electoral process will have implications not just for Nigeria, but for Africa and indeed the world.
“By correcting what was clearly a desperate attempt to change the will of the Osun people, the tribunal has saved Nigeria from great embarrassment and started the process of saving and strengthening our democracy.”
Obasanjo who commended Senator Adeleke for challenging Oyetola’s victory in court further stated that he had refrained from commenting on the 2019 presidential election because a party in the contest had gone to court.
“We will continue to sustain Nigeria in stability and unity on the altar of justice, equity, fairness, freedom, human rights and democracy.
“Stability cannot be successfully built on injustice, corruption, inequity and divided nation, and incompetence, nepotism and one-sidedness.
“Nigeria will march forward with or without those who will want to feed us with diet of values and actions that are not acceptable in their own countries.”