Presidential Adviser Doyin Okupe responded swiftly to former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu's characterization of the proposed national conference as a Greek Gift.
He pointedly charged the leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), to stop misleading Nigerians.
Okupe at a press conference to counter Tinubu, he declared that "It is heart-warming that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu finally made seeming a volte - face on his initial opposition to the convocation of a national Dialogue/Conference by President Goodluck Jonathan in his October 1st National Broadcast.
"It is obvious that his initial reaction on arrival from overseas medical trip was not well-thought out and was roundly opposed, rejected and condemned by a clear majority of the Nigerian people, in particular, the authentic Yoruba leadership in the South West.
"It is therefore crystal clear and unarguable that whatever position the APC Leader holds on the issue of the National Conference does not represent the views of the majority of Yoruba people in the South West.
"In his initial reaction, Senator Bola Tinubu rejected the National Dialogue out rightly and called it a "Greek Gift", diversionary and an act of public deception, which according to him was also ill timed because of the supposed closeness to the forthcoming 2015 Elections.
"His assertion that there is an ulterior motive for the conference is purely conjectural and speculative; and has no foundation in any reasoning or logic. The onus is heavily on him to prove this; hence we will not dwell too much on this unjustifiable conclusion.
"We wish to state categorically that President Goodluck Jonathan has shown convincingly that he is a credible, reliable and capable leader by his unprecedented achievements in such a short space of time. He most certainly does not flip flop as the opposition politician insinuates.
"President Jonathan promised to embark on electoral reforms with the sole aim of giving Nigerians the full value of credible elections.
"It will be recalled that the very first general elections under the watch of President Jonathan was adjudged by both local and international observers including leaders of foreign nations such as America, Britain and France, as being one of the best ever in Nigerian history. This fact is further confirmed by a monumental reduction of almost 70% of litigations arising from the conduct of elections in Nigeria.
"Another pointer to his commitment in this regard are the Edo and Ondo States Governorship Elections where the President's party PDP lost and the entire process was commended by all Nigerians including Bola Tinubu's party, the then ACN. One therefore wonders the mischief that Bola Tinubu intended to play by the alleged non implementation of reports of the Justice Uwais committee on electoral reforms.
"Therefore, contrary to Senator Tinubu's position, Mr President has demonstrated reliability and capability in his handling of his electoral reform promise to the Nigerian people.
"Tinubu's myopia and beclouded diatribe on this matter reveals the narrow mindedness of a local politician totally insensitive to the genuine sensibilities of other sub-nationalities within the polity. The results of the various programmes of the Amnesty Office are self-evident and have definitely impacted positively on the lives and wellbeing of the Youths and Communities in the Niger Delta Region.
"Finally, the reference to the fact that Mr. President is calling for a National Conference at a time when his party, the PDP seems to be having an internal crisis is plainly mischievous and dishonest.
"The APC leader, as usual, is completely off target. Desperate politicians and self-seeking political leaders tend to believe that their quest for power or insatiable appetite for wealth accumulation through politics is superior to the genuine desires and innate aspiration of the ordinary Nigerians while the Bola Tinubu's of this world focus only on the 2015 general elections, most patriotic ordinary Nigerians are more concerned with the emergence of a true united Nation, based on equity and justice to all its component parts, devoid of schisms and rancour which has made it impossible for us to benefit from the full potential of all the God-given resources of our great Nation.