Obasanjo reveals ‘saddest day’ of his life

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo [Photo credit: dailypost.ng]

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has described as his saddest the day he appeared before the military tribunal that tried him for alleged complicity in a coup against late former military dictator, Sani Abacha.

Mr. Obasanjo disclosed on Tuesday this while leading a morning devotion to mark Valentine’s Day at his Presidential Hilltop residence in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

“My saddest day was when I sat in front of a military panel set up by late former Head of State, Sani Abacha to try me over a phantom coup, and sentenced to death and later commuted to 30 years imprisonment,” he said.

Mr. Obasanjo was tried by the tribunal in 1996 alongside his former deputy when he was head of state, Shehu Yar’adua. Mr. Yar’adua later died in 1997 while serving his prison sentence.

Mr. Obasanjo was released from prison after Mr. Abacha died mysteriously in 1998. A year later, he was elected President when Nigeria returned to democracy and became the first person to lead the country twice.

‎Mr. Obasanjo, who read from the Bible book of Isaiah 45:1-4, recalled that, following the jail term slammed on him, he had asked himself if he deserved the treatment meted to him, but that he left everything in the hand of God.

“God has always been giving me immense favour beyond my own expectations and what I deserve from Him. And I used to tell people that God has been partial to me from childhood,” he told his guests on Tuesday.

He said following pressure from international community leaders which included former American president, Jimmy Carter, the Abacha regime reduced his sentence to 15 years. He said had Mr. Abacha lived, he (Obasanjo) would have spent a minimum of 10 years in prison.

Mr. Obasanjo said the death of Mr. Abacha saw him spend only three years in prison, pointing out that as part of the partiality of God to him, he came out from prisons to meet an agitation for him to contest for president, adding, “but the rest is history”.

“I was born in a village and anybody born in that village would have concluded that the popularity of those born there would not go beyond the next village. My parents were complete illiterates,” he said.‎

The former president said, there would always be trouble and problems in life, but that if one is prayerful and close to God, they would overcome.

He recalled that he had strayed into the army, from which he retired as a general and head of state on October 1, 1979.

He said he had experienced tribulations in his life but that God has been on his side throughout.

He then prayed for longevity for all his guests.


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  • Okokondem

    Great! next week you can tell us the happiest day of his life. That is exactly what many Nigerians are dying to hear as they wonder where the next meal will come from, or when next electricity would come on and how long before it goes dark again. Yep, this is what I call investigative journalism.

  • Suleiman Alatise

    You better tread softly now to avoid a return match.

  • SamPsalm

    The saddest day of my life was the day I learned OBJ’s saddest day was all about himself and his skin. Not the day he tried to manipulate his nation’s Constitution to continue in office. Not the day he realised his presidency and ill-fated succession dynamics it had unleashed was going to cost the lives of hundreds of thousand and plunge his nation into an unnecessary economic recession with so many families and destinies probably wiped out having never seen a HAPPY day since Obasanjo and Muritala Mohammed first came to national limelight

  • truth_is_bitter

    Obasanjo is sick. I and many Nigerians wish every other would be his saddest on earth. This evil crooked corrupt politician with advanced degrees in corruption is unfortunately one of Nigeria’s exports. Little wonder that Nigeria is how she is today. With a Buhari tucked away in intensive care in London and some deluded Nigerians praying for his recovery, one wonders whether it is not a perfect description of slaves who love their chains. Indeed, such slaves remain slaves in perpetuity. Nigeria would be a lot better place had some men not been born. Obasanjo, Buhari, Babangida, Abdulsalami, Abacha etc are all in this category. We all know it. If in 2017 when sharp, smart and agile personalities are leading countries but all Nigeria can have from 190 million citizens is a senile, weak and sickly old man with no education and no brains, then something is indeed terribly wrong.

    • Broadway2

      What do you really know about anything? You are just being sentimental for nothing. How old is Trump? If Obasanjo committed any crime against your person or the state, place your evidence in front of a judge. Right now, you are not talking sense at all. What has Buhari and his recovery got to do with this report? Who told you Buhari is even sick? Undergoing medical checkups and tests is not a vadict that one is sick.

      • dave jacob

        “If Obasanjo committed any crime against your person or the state, place your evidence in front of a judge.” For your information, there are many indictments against the old rogue which successive gvts have refused to probe despite calls by groups like Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders. These indictments are the power issue where he gave Liyel Imoke letter to the then Finance minister Eweala so as to allow companies that were not registered to get contracts (those companies were presumably his proxies), Obasanjo Farms holdings, “The Ad hoc Committee on the operation of the PTDF gave a verdict in February 2007, indicting the former President of gross financial mismanagement and corruption.
        “The chairman of the panel, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba (SAN), said that the former President issued public funds for the prosecution of his third term bid and supervised the diversion of public funds which were illegally deposited in banks”, Indictment on privatisation by the Senate which GEJ refused to work on, Obasanjo library which he used his presidency to force people he made rogues to donate to. Google this: “Obasanjo’s Monumental Corruption Exposed!” to know more of the BASTARD THIEF CALLED OLUSEGUN AREMU OBASANJO. Now this:“Lest we forget, the person who introduced corruption to the National Assembly is Chief Olesegun Obasanjo. He birthed the 4th Republic National Assembly with corrupt practices from day one; indeed the first day of the Republic. He bribed both PDP, ANPP and AD legislators on their inauguration in 1999 to vote against the majority candidate of PDP, Dr. Chuba Okadigbo. That was how Senator Evan Enwerem became Senate President. Have we forgotten the sacks of money displayed on the floor of the House of Representatives being bribe money paid by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo to some Honourable members to impeach Speaker, Rt. Hon. Ghali N’abba? ” Have we forgotten that Chief Olusegun Obasanjo used his position as President to extort money from businessmen and contractors with his government to build his presidential library? The list of his corrupt acts while in office is endless. “Unquestionably, he is the greatest corrupt person ever to hold office in Nigeria. He remains the grandfather of corruption in Nigeria and lacks the moral authority to discuss corruption or indeed abuse of office in Nigeria as he remains the most corrupt Nigerian on record.” THE OBASANJO CRIMINAL IS WALKING FREE BECAUSE OF NIGERIA’S PARTICULARLY ROGUISH SYSTEM, OR ELSE HE WOULD HAVE BEEN IN JAIL 20 TIMES OVER. Have you ever heard of presidents in SANE CLIMES establishing libraries and universities in their names while being in power? OBASANJO WAS A GANGSTEROUS MONSTER AT THE ASO VILLA. PMB is also protecting his indictments by saying he would not go beyond probing the GEJ era while people keep SHOUTING that he should PROBE THE HEIST CALLED OLUSEGUN OBSANJO, THE CHIEF ROBBER AMONGST GOVERNMENTAL ROBBERS.

    • Malik Isah

      back to sender

    • Sincere-Voice

      You’re a bitter person – man! And you want to infect others with your bitterness. Drop the bitterness and pray for better days.

  • dave jacob

    Obasanjo, you are a disingenuous old criminal. Your saddest day was when you lost the THIRD TERM bid despite all your criminal and corrupt machinations, despite killing and maiming anti-third term exponents.

  • Ilesanmi Dunjoye

    Truly God has been so partial to Aremu by suspending punishment of this deputy Lucifer for too long.
    But surely nemesis will catch up with him some day, even in few days before he joins his ancestors.

    • Ajayi Ifayemi

      Riro ni t’eniyan. Sise mbe lowo Olorun.

  • tony H

    Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has described as his saddest the day – the day he found out that his son’s wife was a virgin.

  • Abubakar Bello

    Ahhh Baba, you Sure say no be the day you lost Third term Bid.Atikus happiest day in office!!!!