Former President, of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday appealed to Nigerians to take all necessary precautions to avert coup.
Obasanjo stated that the escalating military coups in Africa show that the youths are looking for a liberator, but he would not support a coup given his experience at the hands of former Military dictator, late General Sanni Abacha.
He stated this at an interactive session with a group of young people from the Reverend Chris Oyakhilome-founded Africa for Africa Youth Initiative (A4A) platform at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL) in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Responding to questions during the “Fostering Sustainable Development Through Pan Africanism” session, he stated, “Having suffered at the hands of Abacha, I will not support a military coup.” But what can we do if it has to come?
“The point is this, do we have conditions that encourage the type of things that are happening, if we don’t have the conditions that encourage them, they may not happen. That does not mean it should be encouraged. What it means is that we should make sure that we do everything to prevent coups from happening.
“When you see things that happen in many countries, and I will not exclude Nigeria, then you wonder and don’t forget, don’t forget particularly the youth, they support most of these coups. The one in Gabon, the Coup Leader was being carried on the head by the youths, not by old wretched men and women like me.
“So, the youth are looking for liberators, and we must bear that in mind. Why do we have to allow the youth to start looking for liberators beyond the government of the day? Why?”
Obasanjo added that ” if you have been in government for 40 years and you are not tired, maybe you need retirement, your democracy must take integrity along with it.
“Your democracy must take honesty along with it. Your democracy must take character along with it. Your democracy must take those attributes, God-given attributes, inclusive society, no marginalization, no exclusion, no favoritism.”
He urged the youth of Africa to stand up and assume leadership roles right away rather than waiting for tomorrow, which he claimed might never arrive.
Pastor Henry Akasili, the organization’s executive director, stated that it is the responsibility of A4A to motivate young people to promote sustainable development in Africa.
He said “We believe in action, we believe in seeing that sustainable change in the African continent that is why we have come from 7 African countries, and to go back and influence those who need to be influenced to the same message to another level.
“Africa has a lot of resources, Africa has the brains, Africa is filled and full of intelligent minds. The young people that we have now, know better. They are seeing and hearing ability is a lot better because of the information they have heard from the founder, Reverend Chris Oyakhilome.” he concluded.