Former President Olusegun Obasanjo opened up, yesterday, on his major regret in life. He said it was his parents’ deaths, which didn’t allow them reap the fruits of their labour. According to Obasanjo, his parents’ inability to witness the turnaround in his life was “sad and regrettable,” despite sacrifices they made to ensure his success. He also mentioned Africa’s poor leadership, which according to him, has plunged the continent into various political and economic challenges. Obasanjo disclosed this at the celebration of his 81st birthday, held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta, yesterday.
“One thing I always miss and remember is that my parents left this world too early. The sacrifice they made, they do not wait to see the results. How I wish they had waited to see and eat fruits of their labour”. He, however, remarked that his consolation was in the popular Yoruba belief that, “the dead always look behind” and that the parents would be happy for the success story so far for him. “But going by what Yoruba believe and say that, the dead always watch over their beloved ones and see happenings around them, I am convinced that, my parents are happy in their graves, as they watch over me,” he added. On his 81st birthday, Obasanjo stressed he would continue to appreciate, praise, adore and worship God, just as he commended all those who worked and still working with him. He described them as “loyal aides.”
The former president also harped on the need to serve humanity. “It is when humanity is served that one can serve God. I do not believe that God has created bad situation for Nigeria, or any particularly country in Africa.” On Africa, Obasanjo, blamed the continent’s political and economic woes on leadership deficit, which, according to him, has been largely responsible for the continent’s underdevelopment and growth.
He, however, observed that issue of leadership, development and values, should be upheld to achieve a paradigm shift in various areas of development in Africa.