Despite the constant denials and dodgy response of the presidency to talks on whether President Goodluck Jonathan will run for a second term, the body language of the president, his aides and even close confidants, suggest he will run. Whats more? The Presidency is very optimistic that should President Goodluck Jonathan decide to run for a second term in 2015, no individual or group can stop him from exercising that right; including former President Olusegun Obasanjo who they say, has no choice than to support Jonathan for a second term in office.
This view and others was given on Saturday in Abuja, when Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Barrister Ahmed Ali Gulak, said the constitutional right of President Jonathan to contest the 2015 presidential election is non-negotiable, even as he expressed confidence that in the event the president decides to run, he would perform better in the North than recorded in 2011.
Gulak, while speaking on the Obasanjo factor said, “Nobody is God, nobody should play God, no one is indispensable. Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, no doubt, is a well-respected leader who has played his part in developing the nation; he is a well-respected man who is like a father. But the truth is that just as people say he is a benefactor of the president, others have been his benefactors, too.
“You know you come you go. When your time comes and goes, so be it; only he cannot pick a leader for this nation because Nigerians have not conferred on him the right to pick their leaders for them. This is more so when Nigerians are right-thinking people whose brains work. So, when people continue to express certain views as if the president and the former leader are at war to the extent that such can affect his chances of returning for a second term should he decide, it baffles me.
“There is no war at all, and in fact, there are many individuals who can play roles, not a single person making it work. There is no doubt the former president has influence, but it is limited to a certain level. The truth is that as a member of the PDP, as a former president under the party, as a former chairman of the party’s BoT, and as a member of the same body, former President Olusegun Obasanjo will eventually have no choice than to support a second term should Mr. President decide to run both before the primary and after the primary.”
In what might come as a rude shock to some governors of northern extraction who are rumored to be eyeing the Aso Villa – the seat of power, Gulak says: “Northern governors can’t stop Jonathan. Most of the governors making statements are serving out their second terms, and what do you expect?
“Most of them are aspiring to be president and they cannot stop Jonathan if he decides to contest. How many governors stood for election and failed? They can challenge, yes, but cannot defeat him. Everybody has the right to contest. They can challenge President Goodluck Jonathan, but defeating him? I would say no. None of the governors has the potency to defeat President Jonathan, both within and outside the party, if he decides to contest.”