About a week after former President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote a damning letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, his touted Coalition for Nigeria Movement has been launched in Abuja.
Obasanjo was not present at the launch, but two former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors, Olagunsoye Oyinlola and Donald Duke, were in attendance.
The former President, had said in his public letter that the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were incapable of repositioning Nigeria.
Oyinlola, who spoke at the launch said: “If and when we come to an agreement that we must metamorphose into a political party, then we will. We’re not a political party, at least, for now”.
The former governor of Osun State, said that CNM remains a movement and not a political party unless members agree to transform it into a party. He said that the movement came into being in response to Obasanjo’s call for the emergence of a Coalition to help rescue the country from bad administration.
Oyinlola was also the former Secretary of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), before defecting to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He said that the movement would provide equal platform for all Nigerians, especially women and youths, adding that the movement would be led by the youth, while the elders would only play the role of a guide.
He faulted the allegation that the movement was carrying out Obasanjo’s agenda to install a new leadership for the country.
“To say that we are legitimising Obasanjo’s legacies is a beat off the mark. There is no one who can fault the issues raised in Obasanjo’s letter. Forget the messenger, let’s discuss the message. What he has done is to stir us from our slumber to the reality of what is happening in Nigeria to take charge and take action. Are there no other leaders sitting around and watching how things are going? “I think we should give some kudos to him for being able to address Nigerians on the ills of the society which requires attention,’’ He said.
On whether the movement would be transmuted to a political party to contest the 2019 presidential election, Oyinlola said CNN remains apolitical.
Former governor of Cross River state, Donald Duke also spoke at the ceremony, and described the formation of the movement as timely. He stressed the need for Nigerians to come together and chat the way forward for the country.
According to him, 39 years ago, Nigeria with a population of about 90 million budgeted 25 billion dollars, and now with more than 200 million people, her budget is only 23 billion dollars.
Buba Galadima, a member of APC, said that the movement was being formed to rescue the country from disintegration.
On the possibility that President Muhammadu Buhari may be seeking re-election, Galadima said Nigerians would only support his bid if there was concrete evidence that he had performed well.