Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has said those prevailing on the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the last elections, Atiku Abubakar, not to challenge the outcome of the election were evil minded.
According to him, sustainable peace can never be built on theft and injustice.
Obasanjo, who was reacting to the judgement of the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal declaring Senator Ademola Adeleke of the PDP winner of the September 2018 governorship election in Osun, said Atiku took the right decision in challenging the result of the polls. He also commended the verdict of the tribunal saying it has renewed confidence in the judiciary.
Recall that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had declared President Muhammadu Buhari winner of the February 23 elections with over 15 million votes with Atiku coming a distant second with a little over 11 million.
Atiku, however rejected the result saying that he won the election.
Recall also that Sen. Adeleke had challenged the result of that election and was on Friday, March 22, declared winner by the tribunal.
In a statement on Saturday, Obasanjo said: “While I was in Dubai to attend the Global Education and Skills Forum meeting, I received the news of the judgment of the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal declaring Senator Ademola Adeleke, the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, the winner of the 2018 Governorship election in the state,” Obasanjo said.
“Let me take this opportunity to commend the tribunal for its courage in nullifying what was clearly an illegality. This action by the judicial officers, albeit a first step in the legal process, gives renewed confidence in the judiciary at a time when there are coordinated efforts by some political leaders to undermine, if not destroy, it.
“As I have repeatedly said, the world is watching events in Nigeria with keen interest. What we do or do not do right in our electoral process will have implications not just for Nigeria but for Africa and indeed the world. By correcting what was clearly a desperate attempt to change the will of the Osun people, the tribunal has saved Nigeria from great embarrassment and started the process of saving and strengthening our democracy.
“Let me also commend Sen. Adeleke for his statesmanship in going to court to seek justice. This is the right and proper thing to do in any decent society. Going to court must be encouraged and not discouraged as some people are now attempting to do.
“And if Buhari could go to court three times to seek justice, even without reasonable cause, any Nigerian who feels denied of justice must feel free to go to court.
“Those who have conceived and are promoting the narrative that if Atiku Abubakar continues to seek legal redress there will be violence, are evil minds looking for excuse to unleash violence on Nigerians. At no time in history has sustainable peace been built on theft, injustice, corruption and inequity.”