The All Progressives Congress (APC) has accused former President Olusegun Obasanjo of lobbying United States authorities to withdraw the entry ban against Atiku Abubakar.
Obasanjo had endorsed Atiku’s presidential ambition on Thursday, October 11, 2018.
But, the President Muhammadu Buhari says his government would not be distracted by the endorsement.
In a statement on Friday, October 12, 2018, the APC acting spokesman, Yekini Nabena, described the move by Obasanjo as an act of “legendary hypocrisy”.
“We have come across credible reports that former President Olusegun Obasanjo has made moves to secure United States entry visa for the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alh. Atiku Abubakar, whose candidacy he endorsed on Thursday,” Nabena said.
“It is learnt that that the former President who during and after leaving office insisted on Atiku’s unsuitability to govern Nigeria based on his knowledge of the latter’s extensive corrupt practices while he served as Vice President, is lobbying US authorities to withdraw the ban reportedly placed on Atiku from entering the United States following a 2005 $500,000 bribery scandal that involved Atiku, his fourth wife, Jennifer and former United States Congressman, William Jefferson.
“Recall that the former president while in office had deployed enormous resources of the country on a global dragnet coordinated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in getting Atiku prosecuted for corrupt enrichment and money laundering.
“A report by the United States Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, chaired by Senator Carl Levin reported that Atiku used offshore companies to siphon millions of dollars to his fourth wife in the United States, Jennifer while still the vice president of Nigeria between 2000 and 2008.
“The report further stated that then President Bush had on the strength of his report, barred Atiku and other corrupt politically exposed persons from being issued visa to the United States, a reason for which he has been unable to travel to the United States till date.
“Former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s intervention in Abubakar Atiku’s ban from the United States of America is evidence of Obasanjo’s legendary hypocrisy and self-serving interest in national affairs,” he added.
Meanwhile, Atiku has assured Nigerians that he would not wait for six months before appointing members of his cabinet.