Despite efforts and assurances by the Federal Government that it would rescue the abducted Chobok girls alive, former President Olusegun Obasanjo has raised doubts on their possible return.
Mr Obasanjo, who spoke at an event organized by the Staff Club of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, on Friday, said anyone saying the girls would return was simply telling lies.
The programme which was held at the open arena of the staff club, was themed, “An Evening with Obasanjo.”
Mr. Obasanjo blamed former President Goodluck Jonathan for trivializing the distress call to rescue the girls on the day they were captured.
“The former president heard about the kidnap 8am in the morning of the abduction but failed to act until 72 hours later and by then it was too late,” Mr. Obasanjo stated.
“Anyone saying they(Chibok girls) will return is telling lies, maybe some of them will return to tell their story.”
According to him, the failure of the Peoples Democratic Party in the last presidential election is a blessing to Nigeria.
“We tried, but with Jonathan, it was best that PDP should fail to save Nigeria,” Mr. Obasanjo said.
He pointed out that one of the low points of the Jonathan administration was his treatment of issues of importance as politics, particularly that of Boko Haram.
On power generation, Mr Obasajo said there had been no meaningful improvements since he left office.
“Power is still the same way I left it in 2007, railway is same way and other sectors, it was best that PDP stopped ruling us,” he said.
“It was a thing of joy to me that the earlier declaration of 50 years governance for PDP did not come to pass.”
Mr Obasanjo, who was in company with the Vice-chancellor of the university, Professor Fadipe and other notable personalities, also took out time to take a swipe at Professor Wole Soyinka whom he described as “an amateur politician.”
“Wole Soyinka is a patriotic Nigerian, he is a great man but his opinion regarding politics, he always misses it, I have nothing against him,” he said.
Mr. Obasanjo also justified some of the decisions he took on education, saying he would take the same decisions if he had another chance.
“I have no regrets regarding the decisions I took in terms of education including removing free food in our institutions. We had 53 institutions when I came in 1999 but as at the time I left we had 150 institutions,” Mr Obasanjo explained.
“I prefer to have all persons in schools than to have some few persons simply enjoying free food.”
He also stated that he never had a godfather when he contested for president, admonishing young politicians to shun godfatherism and be ready to face hard times in politics.