Are they back as friends? This could be true going by the report in highly respected Nigeria’s online newspaper, The Cable. The report said there was mild drama in the Ibogun hometown of former President Olusegun Obasanjo in Ogun state, on Friday, when ex-President, Goodluck Jonathan paid him a visit.
Jonathan arrived Ibogun to a warm reception by members of the community as the people sang, danced, and lined up the streets to welcome him.
Jonathan who was reportedly accompanied by Olagunsonye Oyinlola, former governor of Osun state, and some of his former aides, waved back at the crowd.
He thereafter headed to the residence of Obasanjo who according to The Cable acted as if he was not expecting him as he continued enjoying a local game he was playing with a friend while Jonathan sat nearby.
Both men went into a private meeting after exchanging pleasantries. Obasanjo at the end of the closed door meeting, thanked Jonathan for finding time to visit him and according to the report, joked that the trip afforded Jonathan the opportunity to relax like he had never done since he left office.
“I want to thank you very sincerely for taking it upon yourself to pay us a visit at this point in time and at this location,” Obasanjo said.
“Since you left office, you hardly have time to sit down and relax like you have been able to do today and I hope and pray for more such relaxed situation where we can reminiscence situations of the past that we have been through in this country, and also look at what the future portends.
“When leaders come, they have little or no experience, when they have to go is when they have really amassed a lot of experience, where they have wisdom, they are experienced to be in high demand, those people like you and me who have the grace of God to bow out gracefully, if there is no what I call constitutional office, we have residual responsibilities for Nigeria.”
Obasanjo said the world at large is waiting to tap from the experiences of both of them.
“I believe that not only Nigeria, and Africa and indeed the world will continue to tap into our experiences, our wisdom and I hope and pray that when the call is made to you, you will be more than ready to put your experience into the service of this country, Africa and humanity in general,” he said.
“I have said to you before and I will say again that there are plenty of opportunities out there, within the country, within West Africa, within Africa and indeed in the larger world where people will want you to make contributions.
“I believe that you are resting now and when you have fully rested and you will be hearing from me because I have had the opportunity to have gone around the world.
“My regards to everybody at home, especially your wife, please tell her that my wife sends her regards and I hope sooner or later we will be in your part of the world to enjoy the atmosphere together.”
Jonathan while thanking Obasanjo for the warm reception, said he had wanted to visit alongside Ibrahim Babangida but regretted that the former military president could not make it.
Jonathan’s relationship with Obasanjo became frosty especially in the period leading to the 2015 general elections.