The Country Was About To Explode:How Jonathan Saved Nigeria

By Ikenga Chronicles November 21, 2018

The Country Was About To Explode:How Jonathan Saved Nigeria

Former President of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has explained why he had to quickly concede defeat to President Muhammadu Buhari, after the 2015 Presidential Elections.

Jonathan revealed this in his book My Transition Hours.

According to him, while it was obvious that the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) seemed complicit in a move to make him lose the election, he had to make the decision to concede because he realized that some parts of the country were ready to explode into violence;

“For some inexplicable reason, the INEC had been able to achieve near 100% distribution of Permanent Voter Cards in the North, including the North East, which was under siege with Boko Haram insurgency but failed to record a similar level of distribution in the South which was relatively more peaceful.

“Social media was filled with all manner of stories, pictures and videos. I had settled in my mind that I was not going to be the sitting president pointing out these infractions and accusing the opposition and the very INEC I helped to strengthen.

“The world saw my ordeal at the polling unit in my community in Bayelsa State, where the card reader refused my PVC even after we tried repeatedly during accreditation. And it was the same with my wife and my mother. It was a moment that exposed the shortcomings of INEC.”

Jonathan said that despite all of these, he knew that his ambition was not worth “the blood of any Nigerian”, and that he also took into consideration the comments of his major opponent, Muhammadu Buhari, who had in 2011 incited violence with his words about monkeys and baboons being soaked in blood;

“I knew what was coming the day before I called General Muhammadu Buhari. I had reports on the polls around the country. It was clear the results were not going to favour me.

“There were series of problems with card readers, resulting from widespread technical hitches leading to the non-uniform application throughout the country.

“However, I was heading towards peace. Stopping the election on voting day would have been like detonating an atomic bomb.

“The country was tensed. I had to do something. I could no longer wait for the collation of final results. The pressure on the country was palpable.

“In Lagos, people were ready to burst loose on the streets and in the North, the stage was set for envisaged violence. One of my party’s agents at the INEC National Collation Centre in Abuja, Elder Godsday Orubebe eventually got into a heated argument with the INEC chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega.

“That further raised the tension in the country. Everyone was expecting the worse. I knew it was time to douse the tension.”

Aware then that he had to make the call to concede and save the lives of innocent Nigerians, or fight for his right, Jonathan chose the lives of innocent Nigerians and made the concession call.

It was that call that finally returned the unleashed “dogs” to their chains and ultimately saved the country from exploding.