Leadership (Abuja)

20 January 2013

Nigeria: Jonathan Is Performing - Obasanjo

The seeming rift between President Goodluck Jonathan and former President Olusegun Obasanjo took a dramatic turn yesterday in Abeokuta as the duo showered praises on themselves at a reception organised by the South-West Zone of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) in honour of the former president over what they described as their significant contribution to the development of the country.

Former president of Ghana, John Kuffour and the PDP and National Chairman, Bamanga Tukur were among dignitaries who attended the event.

Jonathan and Obasanjo had been reportedly engaged in a war of supremacy over who produces the Board of Trustees (Bot) chairman of the PDP. The conflict between them had also purportedly culminated in the ouster of erstwhile national secretary of the party, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola from the party, with some party members alleging that the decision by the party to speedily obey the court order which sacked Oyinlola was a way of neutralising Obasanjo's grip on the party.

But eulogising themselves at the event in Abeaokuta yesterday, President Jonathan described Obasanjo as a much admired and highly respected elder statesman whose life is closely tied to the history and evolution of Nigeria, the former president said Jonathan was doing the best so far for Nigerians.

Obasanjo who had in the past few weeks scored Jonathan low in his administration's handling of the Boko Haram sect and corruption in the country, made a u-turn yesterday when he commended the Jonathan-led administration for doing what was right for the people by addressing the critical sectors of the economy.

On his part, President Jonathan who was represented by Vice-President Namadi Sambo said that it was the administration of Obasanjo that laid the solid foundation for the development of the country through vibrant policies and programmes which the current administration was building on and thanked the former president for his supportive role in the development of the nation.

"The contribution of Baba Has secured for him a special place in the annals of our history. He guided our country through some of the most challenging periods of her history. Indeed there is much to him and his legacy as former president, former chairman of the Board of Trustees of our great party and foremost farmer,"Sambo said.

Assuring Nigerians that his administration was on course in fulfilling its promises and meeting its basic obligations to the people, he called for continued cooperation and understanding to enable it achieve its good intentions and actions.

The president, through his deputy, informed Nigerians of the giant strides his administration has made in revamping the critical sectors of the economy.

According to him, power generation has more than doubled since his assumption of office from 2000mw in 2010 to over 5000mw now, which had resulted in general improvement in power supply across the country, adding that the ten new thermal power plants would on completion, add about 5,000mw to the National Grid and that the completion of construction work of about 4,000km of transmission lines and hundred injection substations across the country would boost power distribution.

He added that the government would continue to improve its generating capacity on a continuous basis in order to meet the country's Vision 20:2020. This it sought through diversifying its power generation sources.

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