In the last part of our interview with him, former aviation minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, opens up on the inner dealings and manoeuvring within Aso Rock that, in 2006, threw up late Umaru Musa Yar’Adua as presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party.
He reveals the powerful intrigues that led Mr. Obasanjo and the PDP to dump Peter Odili, who was coasting to victory, for Mr. Yar’Adua.
The former minister said most of the hawks in Obasanjo’s government actually tipped a former Minister of the FCT, Nasir El-Rufai as the then president’s successor.
But at a crucial meeting of the administration’s inner caucus, where Mr. El-Rufai enjoyed overwhelming support, Mr. Obasanjo rejected the proposal and gave a marching order to his ministers to work hard for Mr. Yar’Adua’s emergence as president.
The then president’s stance divided the ruling caucus, with a few elements in the administration backing him while majority continued to root for Mr. El-Rufai.
Mr Fani-Kayode said the reason his group did not want Yar’Adua was because he was not exposed at the time.
He listed other reasons you will find in the interview. But in the end, “…Baba chose to go with the other group,” he said.
He said he has since reviewed the period with Mr. Obasanjo and is sure the witty ex-president regrets the choice he made at the time.
“It’s time to set the record straight,” he said.
Watch the video interview below to get the full gist, including names of various members of the caucus at the time and all that transpired in Aso Rock even after Mr. Yar’Adua was nominated.
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