Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Friday laid the foundation of a N350,000,000 (three hundred and fifty million naira) ultra-modern central mosque and Arabic school within the premises of his Presidential Library in Oke-Mosan Abeokuta.
Sources say Obasanjo decided to construct a mosque within the premises of the controversial Presidential Library so as to make the place look international and as well erase the impression that he hates northerners and Islam.
The source said further that four governors in the north held a closed door meeting with Obasanjo before the event where they discussed 2015 election and how President Goodluck Jonathan would be either convinced or stopped from re-contesting to pave way for a Northerner as the next President.
The four Northern governors that were present at the foundation laying and fund raising of Olusegun Obasanjo Baytus Salam central Mosque are Kebbi; Usman Dakingari, Kano State; Rabi Kwakwanso, Sokoto; Aliyu Wamakko, Katsina state governor; Sheu-Shemma Shetima who was represented by his deputy. Each of them donated N20 million for the construction of the mosque.
Others who contributed to the Obasanjo’s mosque and arabic school were the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal who pledged N2 million, Chairman of Dangote group of companies ,Alhaji Aliko Dangote who promised N25 million, former governor of Kebbi State, Senator Adamu Aleru who pledged N10 million.
Former governor of Kwara State, Senator Bukola Saraki also pledged N2 million while former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar also sent a sum of five million naira pledge towards the construction of the mosque.
Also the governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Lamido Sanusi donated N5 million.
Other States that contributed to the construction of the mosque were Adamawa, Niger, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Kogi, Kwara and Ogun States which all sent their pledges of N20 million each through the Sokoto state governor.
Speaking at the gathering, Obasanjo, a Christian of the Baptist faith himself, urged Nigerians to have religious tolerance and be accommodating, one to another. “I believe that the more you know your God, the better you will be able to serve him,” Obasanjo said.