I won't dignify Jonathan with a response, Obasanjo says
Obviously not wanting to be engaged in sustained exchange of toxic letter with the President, former President Olusegun Obasanjo has signaled that he was not going to reply to issues raised President Goodluck Jonathan's letter to him.
Mr. Obasanjo, who spoke through his aide, Tunde Oladunjoye, at a press conference at the former president's Hilltop residence in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, said on Monday he would not dignify President Goodluck Jonathan's letter to him with a reply.
The former president had written an 18-page to president Jonathan implying that he had misgoverned and misdirected Nigeria. He specifically mentioned alleged increases in the rates of corruption, high insecurity in the land, tribal bent of the administration and unchecked oil theft as some of the indicators and catalysts for Nigerian downturn under Jonathan's watch.
President's Jonathan's reponse was released on Sunday, in which he countered most of the allegations. He accused Obasanjo of of running a hate campaign against him.
According to him, he has performed his duty to the president, the People's Democratic Party, PDP, and Nigeria with his December 2 letter.
He said that though he had received several requests from local and international media, asking him to respond to the president's letter, he would prefer to keep his promise in his letter to maintain silence.
The former president had in an 18-page letter to Mr. Jonathan accused the president of failing to deliver on his electoral promises, promote national unity, check corruption and strengthen national security.
He also accused the president of planning to renege on his promise to spend one term of four years in office and of training a killer squad ahead of the 2015 general elections.
Mr. Obasanjo added in the letter, which he also shared with some past leaders, that he was ready for whaterver backlash his letter would provoke from the Presidency.
In his reply to Mr. Obasanjo's letter, the president, in a letter dated December 20, slammed the former president, describing his (Obasanjo) letter to him as 'distinctly ominuous.'
Mr. Jonathan, who listed 10 reasons for replying Mr. Obasanjo, said the former president's letter was an attempt to instigate people from other regions against him and cause disaffection within the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
But speaking Monday, Mr. Obasanjo referred to page 14, paragraph 2 of his letter in which he promised to maintain serenity in the face of attacks, the former president said he would not bandy words with Mr. Jonathan, insisting that he had done his duty to the Jonathan administration, the PDP and the country.
'Since the publication of the letter written by the President, Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, we have received several requests from local and international media asking to know Chief Obasanjo's reaction to Mr President's response,' Mr. Oladunjoye said.
'One, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo acknowledges Mr President's letter/response. However,Baba, as he already indicated in his December 2,2013 letter,does not wish to make further comments beyond the contents of his last letter to Mr President or react to the said letter/response from Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
'I will maintain my serenity, because by this letter, I have done my duty to you as I have always done, to your government, to the party, PDP, and to our country, Nigeria.'