Former President Goodluck Jonathan has congratulated presidential candidates of the different political parties.
In a congratulatory statement issued on his social media page on Thursday, Jonathan urged them to avoid divisive campaigns ahead of the 2023 elections.
He said, “I congratulate the winners of the various primaries across the political spectrum, particularly Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu who has won the presidential primary of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the flagbearers of other parties that have also concluded their primaries.
“They include Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso, New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Malik Ado-Ibrahim, Young Progressives Party (YPP), Chief Dan Nwanyanwu, Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Dumebi Kachikwu, African Democratic Congress (ADC) as well as Adewole Adebayo of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
“Your emergence as the flagbearers of your parties after submitting yourselves to a rigorous selection and election processes demonstrates your belief and interest in the progress of our nation.”
Conspicuously missing on Jonathan’s list of candidates is Omoyele Sowore, founder of SaharaReporters and candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC) for the 2023 general elections.
Sowore was on Thursday affirmed as the party’s presidential candidate at the AAC convention that took place in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
He will be up against Tinubu, Atiku and other presidential candidates mentioned by the ex-President who was angry over different reports published by SaharaReporters exposing his corrupt regime.
Jonathan was Nigeria’s vice-president between 2007 and 2010 and became the president in May 2010 following the death of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. He later completed the latter’s tenure.
Jonathan won the 2011 presidential election but lost his attempt to secure a second term in office in 2015. He and his aides have blamed Sowore and SaharaReporters several times for his loss.
“In 2014, when @GEJonathan said ‘I am the most INSULTED president in the world but when I leave office, you will all remember me for the total freedom you enjoyed’, he was referring to Sowore and SaharaReporters. Nigerians mistook his TOLERANCE for WEAKNESS,” Reno Omokri, a former aide to ex-President had said.
While in government, SaharaReporters in a series of detailed investigations carried out exposed how Jonathan, his wife, Patience; Ministers; Heads of Agencies and others illegally acquired several properties in Nigeria and overseas whose value runs into many billions of dollars.
A move by the Aso Rock cabal to impose him as the consensus candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) was also exposed by the newspaper.
SaharaReporters also exposed how the move fell through, leading to the eventual emergence of Bola Tinubu as the presidential candidate of the APC at the party’s national convention on Wednesday.