The Coalition for Nigeria movement proposed by former President Olusegun Obasanjo has been launched in Abuja.
The movement was launched at the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre. Obasanjo was not present at the launch, but two former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors, Olagunsoye Oyinlola and Donald Duke, were in attendance. Former PDP Chairman Amadu Ali and Akin Osuntokun a former spokesperson for ex-president Olusegun Obasanjo were also at the event.
Obasanjo had suggested the movement in a piblic statement he issued on Tuesday January 23, 2017, to criticise President Muhammadu Buhari’s handling of national issues.
He had promised to be part of a Coalition for Nigeria after stating that both the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the rulimg All Progressives Congress (APC) were not viable options for Nigerians. He had also advised Buhari not to contest for a second term in the 2019 general elections.
Speaking at the lanch of the movement, Oyinlola said he has not renounced his membership of All Progressives Congress (APC) as a movement and a party are two different things.
He said: “The aims and objectives of the coalition makes it mandatory for us to hit the ground running. Time is not on our side and if we are going to effect the aims of the coalition them we must run fast ”
He said the desire of the movement is to see the new Nigeria and that there is a need for synergy between all the movement in the country to achieve a common goal of giving the leadership of the country to the knowledgeable and vibrant young people.
The former Governor pointed out that the old ones in the coalition would be like the guardian angel while the young ones would be in the driver seat and steer the ship of the country.
“What we are trying to do is like a guardian angel, it is you that must decide who is to do what and at what level. That is why we are having this meeting today and putting it back to you.”
He explained that nobody is bringing money into the movement adding that everybody will contribute in order to avoid one person controlling and dictating the affairs of the movement. He argued that everybody must have equal say and equal decision. He debunked the insinuation that the movement is gear toward legalising the legacy of the former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
In his own remark the former Governor of Cross River State, Donald Duke said that we don’t have a political party in the country but platforms making people crisscross from one platform to the other seeking for office.
“What they are doing is seeking office not implementing a thought. But we also aware that a new generation is at the vanguard of taking over and why our own generation is stepping back as Governor Oyinlola said. The new vanguard will lead but we step back and perhaps guide and share our experiences which may serve as guide to the new generation.”
He maintained that the new generation needs mentorship and if they failed to prepare the next generation for the leadership role the country is doomed.
He also noted that APC and PDP have not been able to meet the aspirations of Nigerians adding that “there is need to reevaluate and recalibrate ourselves in order to make progress”