A former presidential aide, Reno Omokri, has described as a “ridiculous assertion” the allegation that the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan did not honour the memory of presumed winner of the annulled June 12, 1993 presidential election, Chief MKO Abiola.
Omokri, who was Special Assistant to Jonathan on New Media, issued the clarification after President Muhammadu Buhari renamed the Abuja National Stadium after the late billionaire on Wednesday.
The ex-presidential aide said that Jonathan renamed the University of Lagos after Abiola, querying which was more prestigious between the 57 -year-old university and the abandoned stadium.
He wrote: “It has come to my attention that the Buhari Presidency, embarrassed that not a single former President or ex-head of state attended Muhammadu Buhari’s June 12 celebration, is spreading tales, through faceless groups and expected to grace the headlines of tomorrow’s papers, to the effect that former President Goodluck Jonathan refused to rename the National Stadium Abuja despite advice to do so, because he was afraid of former President Olusegun Obasanjo and lacked the courage to do so.
“Between the national stadium and the University of Lagos, which is more prestigious and which would require more courage to rename?
“It would also be recalled that former President Jonathan took several other courageous decisions during his presidency, including firing two ministers when questions of impropriety were raised against them.
“There have been a number of serious and proven cases of impropriety involving Muhammadu Buhari’s ministers, including two incidents of clearly established cases of certificate forgery. Did Mr. Buhari have the courage to move against them?
“But after he was snubbed by all living former Nigerian leaders and Nigeria’s only Nobel Laureate, he had to cook up a story to satisfy his guests, some of whom, like President Paul Kagame, have castigated him to his face.
“For the avoidance of doubt, let me state here that the slogan for chief MKO Abiola’s Hope 93 campaign was ‘Farewell to Poverty’. Today, Buhari, a man who made Nigeria the world’s headquarters for extreme poverty, wants to reap Abiola’s goodwill,” he pointed out, as he contended that it was not possible that Buhari could gain any goodwill by making Jonathan, a man who made Nigeria the world’s third fastest-growing economy, his scapegoat.
“It is,therefore, not a surprise that those who really knew and loved Chief Abiola, chose to stay away from such a farce,”