Obasanjo: Nigeria Is Cursed

Olusegun Obasanjo
Olusegun Obasanjo

Former President of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo said the country may have been cursed with poor and irresponsible leaders.

Speaking yesterday, while giving a keynote address at the 4th Annual Ibadan Sustainable Development Summit organised by Centre for Sustainable Development, University of Ibadan, in collaboration with African Sustainable Development Network, Obasanjo said if Nigerians were yet to commend a leader after 53 years of independence, “Then we are jinxed and cursed; we should all go to hell.”

Condemning the younger generation of leaders in the country, Obasanjo said they lack integrity and probity and have failed their people woefully.

The former president didn’t talk without giving examples as he made reference to his Vice President for eight years, Atiku Abubakar; former governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu; former Speaker, House of Representatives, Salisu Buhari; former Bayelsa State Governor, Deprieye Alamieyeseigha; and others as younger generation of leaders Nigeria was unlucky to have.

“We had some people who were under 50years in leadership positions. One of them was James Ibori, where is he today? One of them was Alamieyeseigha, where is he today? Lucky Igbinedion, where is he today?

“The youngest was the Speaker, (Salisu) Buhari; you can still recall what happened to him. You said Bola Tinubu is your master. What Buhari did was not anything worse than what Bola Tinubu did.

“We got them impeached. But in this part of the world some people covered up the other man. The man claimed he went to Government College, Ibadan but the governor (Oyo State) went to Government College and packed all the documents so that they would not know that he did not go there.

“I wanted someone who would succeed me so I took Atiku. Within a year, I started seeing the type of man Atiku is. And you want me to get him there?

“I once went to Tanzania because Julius Nyerere recognised Biafra. He told me not to mind his aides and others in government. They would say they have one house in town but their five year old sons and daughters would have houses all over.

“Some of you who are condemning the leadership would get there tomorrow and it will be a different story. Only very few are actually good.

“Abacha, my predecessor got $750m. Through our lawyer in Switzerland we recovered $1.25bn and the lawyer still said there is probably still another $1bn to be recovered. In 1979 we had 20 new ships specially built for Nigeria. When I came back 20 years after, the national shipping line had liquidated.

“The whole thing is not just about leadership. If we talk about good leadership you should also talk about good followers. If you talk about human right you should also talk about human duties and obligations.

“It is sad that after 53 years of independence we have no leader that we can commend. The problem in Africa is that when one person takes over he would not see any good thing that his predecessor did. Let us condemn but with caution,” Obasanjo said.

The former president also expressed concern over the high level of youth unemployment and the general insecurity in Nigeria, calling for concerted efforts to tackle youth unemployment.

“The vulnerability we are all exposed to because of having millions of unemployed people can only worsen when the problem is treated with neglect.

“The Nigerian state is currently beset by myriad of security, economic, environmental and social challenges.

“The issue of security is most pervasive not only in terms of Boko Haram, but also in terms of armed robbery, kidnapping, corruption, flood, erosion, drug and human trafficking,” he said.

Speaking further, Obasanjo who frowned at the incessant killing in the country said efforts to restore peace in the country must be sustained.

“Without adequate mechanism to restore peace, the country risks losing more lives and property and in particular the goal of sustainable development would be out of reach,” he added.

10 Comments

  • Thompson, am so sorry for you because i can see how you reason like a rat.. i pity you.. i need you to tell me what went wrong in what Obasanjo said in his speech? we Nigerian.. am sure we are cursed like Obasanjo said….

  • For the first time in many years,i am agreeing with president Obasanjo,he said it all & it’s a pity for this country. The so called progressives should listen to this man this time & reflect on all he had said as regard leadership,followership,citizenship etc. OBJ got it all right this time.

  • Fellow Nigerian, this is a food for thought.
    The truth is that we lack truth and honest leaders in Nigeria.It is said that “A leader lead by example while a ruler rules anyhow” so we only have rulers and not leaders irrespective of wethers they are President,Governors or others.

  • Is now that you know that Nigeria is cursed, Because you are no longer in power. Well i don’t blem you cos you re entitie to your opinion. But let me tell you Nigeria is not curse, YOU ARE THE PROBLEM. OBJ PLS CHANGE YOUR MIND SET.

  • we may all belve nigeria is curse,but nigeria is not curse n can not be curse at all.is our leader dat is curse!as soon as they enter office,they now cntrol by the gods dat made dem wat they are.nigeria can neva be a better country unles we have a leaders dat ll listen to the voice of the living god instead of listening to the voice of a devil.

  • This man should just sit down at his farm and stop condemning others. Was he not the same person that ruled in 1976 during oil boom and he lavish our money on festival of idol worshipping then(FESTAC), was he not the one that increases fuel from 27naira to 87 naira during his second coming, what about the blood of innocent Odi people he massacre, and he gave us the most expensive telecom services in the world. The list are endless, u set the ball of corruption, army/political arrangement, neopotism etc rolling and u are condeming others. God punish u Rot in hell.

    • @ Captain, I quite agree with u. It is unfortunate all this are coming from OBJ. I think Nigerians has this problem of forgetting so easily & not keeping track of ones antecedents, otherwise I see no reason he ( OBJ ) should be condemning past leaders when he didn’t do anything different in his time. This is a case of pot calling kettle black. One day God will rescue the common man in this country, Amen

  • @Captain,don’t mind shameless,most second worst leader and old fool.Is it not the course of everything we can call corruption in this country,so,he can covered his misdeed and tring to conderm others.Nigeria was not caused and it can never be caused,it is them (Stupid and self-center leaders) that can be causing be Nigerians.GOD bless Nigeria and Nigerians.

  • NIGERIA is only jinxed and cursed if after 53years of independence unable to commend a leader OBJ said, not excluding himself! everything then boils down to a collective responsibiliies as stated in paragraph 11. GOD BLESS NIGERIA

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