Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has said that his viral open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari was written out of his deep concern for the ways things are turning out in the country.
He said the letter was not written out of hate or ‘bad belle’ for President Buhari.
Obasanjo stated this at the Nigeria Union of Journalists secretariat, Oke Ilewo area of Abeokuta on Thursday, February 1, 2018, after the Coalition for Nigeria Movement was inaugurated in Ogun State.
In his letter, the former president criticised Buhari‘s performance since he took office in 2018, rating it low.
He also called for a new movement, which will chart a new course for the development of the country ahead of the 2019 elections.
Obasanjo said the ruling APC and the major opposition party, PDP are incapable of delivering good governance, hence the need for the move which he named ‘Coalition for Nigeria’.
The movement was launched in Abeokuta 24 hours after it was inaugurated in Abuja.
Obasanjo filled the registration form in his home state and was subsequently registered as a member of the movement.
He had, however, said he would pull out of the movement if it metamorphoses into a political party, insisting that he left the PDP because he was done with partisan politics, the decision he said he intends to uphold.
Obasanjo was was said to have arrived the venue at the inauguration at exactly 12.44pm in company of former governors of Cross River and Osun States, Donald Duke and Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola respectively, among others.
Speaking at the event, Obasanjo said he wondered why Nigerians were worried that he exchange pleasantries with Buhari at the just concluded African Unity summit in Ethiopia few days after he wrote the open letter.
He said, “Last week, I issued a statement which I did not do lightly or frivolously but out of deep concern for the situation of our country.
“I wonder why some Nigerians were worried why I had to pay respect to the Nigerian President at Addis Ababa. That’s my own upbringing as a well-born and bred Yoruba boy.
“That doesn’t mean that what I have said about the President, which I did not say out of bitterness and hatred. It is evidence that the President has performed, in some areas, good enough.
“In other areas not good and a proper advice which he may take and he may not take.
“I didn’t do that out of malice or out of ‘bad belle’; I did it out of my respect for that office and my interest and I hope in your interest and the interest of Buhari in Nigeria.”