My relationship with Buhari cordial, says Goodluck Jonathan
Former President Goodluck Jonathan said yesterday he had no problems with his successor, President Muhammadu Buhari.
Jonathan said his relationship with Buhari had been cordial.
He also commended the President for completing legacy projects of previous administrations in the country, saying it was the way to go.
‘’You’ve been seeing me coming and you have been seeing us having friendly conversations. So, our relationship is okay, ‘’ Jonathan told State House correspondents in an interview after his visit to President Buhari.
The former President, who is the ECOWAS Special Envoy to Mali, was at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, to brief President Buhari on the efforts of his committee to resolve the political crisis in Republic of Mali.
Jonathan, who was in company of President of ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, told the President that ECOWAS could not preside over the removal of an elected President.
“Not even the African Union (AU) or the United Nations (UN) can do it. Leaders must be elected and leave under constitutional processes, otherwise we would have Banana republics all over the place,’’ he said.
Recall that there were protests against Mali’s President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, who has spent two of the five years second term in office.
A resistance group, M5, is insisting that the Constitutional Court must be dissolved, and the President resign for peace to return to the country.
Crisis had erupted after the court nullified results of 31 parliamentary seats in the polls held recently, awarding victory to some other contenders, which the resistance group alleged was at the instigation of President Keita.
Riots on July 10 had led to the killing of some protesters by security agents, which caused the crisis to spiral out of control, hence the intervention of ECOWAS.
Jonathan thanked President Buhari for providing a Presidential jet for the mission, “adding that this made the trips convenient and comfortable.
He also expressed appreciation for the Itakpe-Warri railway complex named after him last weekend, stressing “it was a big present for me; thank you very much.’’
In his response, President Buhari said he would consult with key leaders of ECOWAS countries to find solution to the crisis rocking the Republic of Mali.
“We will ask the President of Niger, who is the Chairman of ECOWAS to brief us as a group, and we will then know the way forward,’’ the President said.
He thanked Dr Jonathan for his comprehensive brief on the situation in Mali,“which you had been abreast of since you were the sitting Nigerian President.”
Speaking to State House correspondents, Dr. Jonathan praised his successor for continuing with the legacy projects of previous administrations.
President Buhari recently named the largest station on the Warri-Itakpe railway route, Agbor railway facility and station, after the former President.
Reacting to the gesture, Jonathan, who said he had already written a letter of appreciation to President Buhari, praised and commended him for carrying on with the railway programme and other legacy projects inherited from previous administrations.
He said what Buhari did was the proper thing to do.
Asked about the naming of projects after him, Jonathan said: “Let me use this opportunity to commend Mr. President publicly. I’ve already sent a letter to appreciate him; . it’s a good gesture. And completing the railway programme is good.”
‘’It shows that the President is going on with the legacy projects of previous administrations. That is the way to go.