Former Nigeria President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, said that the Peoples Democratic Party sank when he and a former chairman , Ahmadu Ali , left the party.
The former PDP Chieftain , who double as the former chairman , Board of Trustees of the party, said when he was Nigeria ’s President and Ali was the PDP Chairman, the PDP controlled 30 out of the 36 states in the country .
Obasanjo disclosed this on Friday during the display of 40 African traditional drums in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of Nigeria ’s hosting of the World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture , popularly known as FESTAC 77.
The event was also to honour Obasanjo on his 80th birthday by the Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilisation of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library , Abeokuta , on Friday.
Obasanjo , who was referring to the internal crisis in the party, later
prayed that the country would not suffer the fate that befell the PDP . He said his relationship with Ali started when they both served in Yakubu Gowon’s administration as ministers .
He said , “ When he (Ali ) was the Chairman of the PDP , we controlled 30 out of the 36 states . When Ahmadu Ali and I left, the fortune of the PDP sank . May the fortune of Nigeria never sink .”
Before he completed his statement, the people in hall answered with
a thunderous ‘ Amen .’
Earlier, as part of the activities marking the 80th birthday of the former president, there was an international symposium , where a former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Andrew Young; a former permanent delegate of Kenya to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation , Dr . Mary Khimulu , and others spoke on the theme: ‘Purpose and utilitarian values of presidential libraries .’
Young, in his contribution , described Obasanjo as a man of peace and integrity . He noted that the Obasanjo Presidential Library would help others to understand his work and leadership qualities.
Khimulu said the library was not only for Nigeria but also for the whole of Africa, while urging the youth to take advantage of it and embrace the leadership qualities of the former president .
While talking about the library, Obasanjo described it as “ an act of God.”
The former President said while he was in the military as Head of State and during the civil war, he did not gather many materials that could have been in the library.
He said, “ Somebody among the university dons who spoke earlier said God has always given me the opportunity to correct my wrongs; not in all cases , but in most cases . And this presidential library is actually an act of God, which He has given to me to correct one of my past mistakes and I have said this very often . ”