Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, has
said that he will not apologise for treading on anybody’s toes, during
his reign as President of the country, between 1999 and 2007.
The Elder Statesman, who spoke in Lagos,
during a reception organised by his close associates, to celebrate his
80th birthday said: “I make no apologies for treading on anybody’s toes.
If anybody put their toes on my path, I will tread on them.”
He attributed Nigeria’s woes to
inconsistencies in government policies. Obasanjo said the failure of
successive leaders to consolidate on the achievements of their
predecessors, had made governance look like an impossible task.
The former President said: “He (Yew)
simply told me their secret was that, they did a few things right and
continued to do them right. We keep lamenting, as if Nigeria is
impossible to run or get things rights.Obasanjo recalled, that during
one of his visits to Singapore, he asked the country’s former Prime
Minister, Harry Lee Kuan Yew, the secrets of the Asian country’s
“I think that during my tenure as
President, we did quite a few things right, but our failure to continue
to do what we have done right, is the problem.
“One of the things we got right was the
Universal Basic Education. We said Nigerians had no reason not to have
at least nine years of education.
“On primary healthcare, we did things
right, because we realised that if we provided basic care for malaria
treatment, we would reduce infant and maternal mortality.
“On anti-corruption, I think we got it right. But did we continue to get things right?”
Speaking earlier at the occasion, two
former Governors, Gbenga Daniel (Ogun State); and Olagunsoye Oyinlola
(Osun State); had claimed that Obasanjo trod on their toes, during his
“In fact, Baba almost crushed my toes.
But Baba is a great man who cares for the nation, and wants things to be
done the right way,” Daniel said, with Oyinlola expressing the same