Indications emerged on Sunday that President Goodluck Jonathan has not foreclosed the possibility of reconciling with former President Olusegun Obasanjo following the recent public exchange of correspondence between the pair.
Confirmation that the once chummy relationship between the duo has turned sour came to the front burner in December 2013 when Obasanjo wrote a letter titled ‘Before it is too late’ to the president.
In the said letter, the former president accused Jonathan of condoning corruption, training snipers, putting about 1,000 Nigerians on a watch list, engaging in anti-party activities and other acts capable of tearing the nation apart.
In his reply, which was also made open, the president accused Obasanjo of writing a letter capable of inciting Nigerians against him even as he denied all the allegations leveled against him and his administration by the former president.
The public spat between the duo reportedly led some former leaders and eminent Nigerians to embark on a fence mending mission in order to reduce the tension generated in the polity by the open letters which they noted was not in the best interest of the country and its people.
Although the Special Adviser to the president on Political Matters, Ahmed Gulak in an exclusive interview with SUNDAY Punch in Abuja, said though he was not aware of such moves to reconcile his boss and Obasanjo, the move could not be faulted.
He stated that in spite of the exchange of letters between the two leaders, the president still had the utmost regard for Obasanjo.
The presidential aide added that President Jonathan considers Obasanjo not only as a leader but also as a father hence his deference to him as ‘Baba’.
“We are not aware of the reconciliation moves but there is nothing wrong with it. In fact, it is a good development because our party, the PDP, is always open to reconciliation.
“Only God is perfect. If in the wisdom of the nation’s elders, there is a need for reconciliation, there is no problem.
“Let me assure you however that President Jonathan has nothing against Chief Obasanjo. He considers the former President as a leader and a father that is why he calls him Baba.
“President Jonathan has highest respect for Chief Obasanjo. The recent exchange of letters does not mean that he does not hold the former President in high esteem.
“Nobody is perfect. No leader is perfect; it is only God that is perfect. There is no alternative to peace in the country and in our party”.
Speaking in the same vein, a media aide to Obasanjo, Mr. Tunde Oladunjoye, said on Sunday that the former leader was not at loggerheads with Jonathan.
Oladunjoye also denied knowledge of any move to reconcile the two leaders.
According to him, “Baba did not write that letter as an enemy. He said he wrote the letter as part of his duties to his political godson, the PDP and the nation.
“I can tell you without any fear of contradiction that Baba is not at war with anybody, including the President. That is why when the President wrote his own letter, Baba said he had no comment to make”.
The media aide wondered why some people felt they could benefit from a dispute that did not exist between Obasanjo and Jonathan, reiterating the part in the letter by the former president where he stated that he would maintain his sanity.