Why I Picked Yar’Adua And Jonathan To Succeed Me – Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun  Obasanjo has said ex-President, Goodluck Jonathan was not his first choice as running mate for late Umar Yar’adua.

Obasanjo disclosed this in a book ‘Against The Run Of Play’ written by the chairman of ThisDay Editorial Board, Segun Adeniyi.

 Obasanjo confirmed that former governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili, was actually his first choice as Yar’adua’s running mate.
He however said some hurdles made the preference unrealizable.

Obasanjo said, “Of course, Jonathan was not my first choice as running mate to Yar’Adua; it was Dr. Peter Odili. But whether by fate or some conspiracy, Odili had hurdles that made it impossible for him to take that position. That was how I settled for Jonathan.”

On why he picked Yar’Adua to succeed him despite the latter’s illness, Obasanjo said Yar’adua’s response to two clarifications he posed to him convinced him.

“One, the lingering doubts about his health, while the other was a very pervasive allegation that he had a manipulative wife who had too much influence on him,” Obasanjo said.

He added that Yar’adua dismissed the allegation against his wife.

On his health, Yar’adua handed Obasanjo the medical report he sought from him.

“Not being a medical practitioner, I gave the report to a friend and renowned professional in the medical field who reviewed it and told me that the person in the report was not on dialysis, which meant either he didn’t have a kidney problem or that he had successfully undergone a kidney transplant. That was the report I had about his health,” Adeniyi quoted Obasanjo as saying.

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