The All Progressives Congress (APC) says former president Goodluck Jonathan should not have bothered to respond to the allegations of former British Prime Minister, David Cameron, over the abduction of the Chibok schoolgirls in 2015.
The party’s National Publicity Secretary, Lanre Issa-Onilu, in a statement said Nigerians already know the story of Jonathan’s “habitual negligence” to matters of state and so it was not necessary for him to try to deny.
According to the party, denying or arguing would not change anything.
In his new book entitled, For the Record, Mr Cameron had accused the previous government of “sleeping on the wheel” while Boko Haram terrorists were abducting schoolgirls in Chibok community of Borno State.
The former United Kingdom Prime Minister also accused Dr Jonathan of preventing British forces from engaging in rescue efforts, saying he seemed to see the incident as cheap politics.
However, responding to the matter, Jonathan described the claims as “quite sad”.
He insisted that none of the allegations was true, adding that he did not only write letters to the former UK Prime Minister but sought the help of former Presidents Barrack Obama (US) and Francois Hollande (France), as well as the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in rescuing the Chibok girls.
The reaction came as the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) group marked 2000 days of the abduction on October 5.
But the APC insists that the Jonathan administration was corrupt.
Beyond that, the party also says it is a national consensus that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), elevated corruption to a national culture.
“The Chibok schoolgirls abduction and his “sleeping behind the wheel” is not a story to deny as it is already part of our national history. We may disagree on a number of issues in Nigeria, but there is a national consensus on the fact that PDP elevated corruption to a national culture.
“That Jonathan’s government was corrupt was actually half of the story. The full story is that corruption hallmarked the successive 16 years,” the statement read.
The APC went further to state that “what is important now is Jonathan explaining to the families of the abducted schoolgirls why as president, he did nothing for two weeks after the Chibok abductions and still refuses to take responsibility for the tragedy up till now — except he continues to blame the Chibok abductions and other failings of his administration on the so-called grand conspiracy against him as he laboriously tries to state in his response to Cameron”.
According to the party, the current administration’s reactions and actions after the similar and unfortunate Dapchi schoolgirls kidnapping is a pointer to how a responsive government should act.
Former President Goodluck Jonathan has slammed a former British Prime Minister, David Cameron, over the allegations against him and his administration.
In his new book entitled, For the Record, Mr Cameron was said to have accused the previous government of “sleeping on the wheel” while Boko Haram terrorists were abducting schoolgirls in Chibok community of Borno State.
The former United Kingdom prime minister also accused Dr Jonathan of preventing British forces from engaging in rescue efforts, saying he seemed to see the incident as cheap politics.
Responding in a statement on Saturday, former President Jonathan criticised Cameron for the claims, saying “It is quite sad.”
He insisted that none of the allegations was true as he did not only write letters to the former UK Prime Minister but sought the help of former Presidents Barrack Obama (US) and Francois Hollande (France), as well as the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in rescuing the Chibok girls.
He reminded Cameron that in March 2012 when the same Boko Haram linked terrorists abducted a British expatriate named Chris McManus along with an Italian hostage Franco Lamolinara in Sokoto, he authorised a rescue effort by members of the British military Special Boat Service supported by the Nigerian Army to free the abducted men.
The former president stated that the UK government did not offer any help to rescue the Chibok girls, stressing that he would not have rejected same if there was any.
He, however, accused Cameron of suppressing information about him requesting his help on the Chibok abduction, saying copies of the letter exist at the State Houses in Nigeria and London.
“He (Cameron) never called me on the phone to offer any help. On the contrary, I am the one that reached out to him,” Jonathan said.
Read the full statement from the former president below:
My Response To David Cameron’s Claims
I read the comments by former British Prime Minister, David Cameron, in his new book, For the Record, in which he accused me and the Nigerian Government, which I headed, of corruption and rejecting the help of the British Government in rescuing the Chibok Girls, who were kidnapped on April 14, 2014.
It is quite sad that Mr. Cameron would say this because nothing of such ever occurred. As President of Nigeria, I not only wrote letters to then Prime Minister David Cameron, I also wrote to the then US President, Barrack Obama, and the then French President, François Hollande, as well as the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, appealing to them for help in rescuing the Chibok Girls.
How could I write to appeal for help and then reject the very thing I appealed for?
Also, history contradicts Mr. Cameron. On March 8, 2012, when the same Boko Haram linked terrorists abducted a British expatriate named Chris McManus, along with an Italian hostage Franco Lamolinara, in Sokoto, I, as Nigerian President, personally authorised a rescue effort by members of the British military Special Boat Service supported by officers and men of the Nigerian Army, to free the abducted men.
So, having set a precedent like that, why would I reject British help in rescuing the Chibok Girls, if it was offered?
I also authorised the secret deployment of troops from the United Kingdom, the United States and Israel as a result of the Chibok incident, so how Mr. Cameron could say this with a straight face beats me.
Moreover, on March 8, 2017, the British Government of former Prime Minister, Theresa May, in a widely circulated press statement, debunked this allegation and said there was no truth in it after Mr. Cameron had made similar statements to the Observer of the UK.
In his book, Mr. Cameron failed to mention that I wrote him requesting his help on Chibok. Why did he suppress that information? I remind him that copies of that letter exist at the State Houses in Nigeria and London. He never called me on the phone to offer any help. On the contrary, I am the one that reached out to him.
He accused me of appointing Generals based on political considerations. How could that be when I fired my service chiefs twice in five years, to show that I would not tolerate anything less than meaningful progress in the war on terror.
I was completely blind to ethnic or political considerations in my appointments. In civil and military matters, I appointed people that I had never even met prior to appointing them, based on their professional pedigree. Though I was from the South, most of my service chiefs came from the North.
I do, however, know that Mr. Cameron has long nursed deep grudges against me for reasons that have been published in various media.
On July 24, 2013, while celebrating the passage of the United Kingdom’s Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act, 2013, Mr. Cameron said “I want to export gay marriage around the world”.
At that occasion, he boasted that he would send the team that successfully drafted and promoted the Bill, to nations, like Nigeria, saying inter alia:
“I’ve told the Bill team I’m now going to reassign them because, of course, all over the world people would have been watching this piece of legislation”.
As President of Nigeria at that time, I came under almost unbearable pressure from the Cameron administration to pass legislation supporting LGBTQ Same Sex marriage in Nigeria. My conscience could not stomach that, because as President of Nigeria, I swore on the Bible to advance Nigeria’s interests, and not the interest of the United Kingdom or any foreign power.
As such, on Monday, January 13, 2014, I signed the Same-Sex Marriage Prohibition Bill into law after the Bill had been passed by an overwhelming bipartisan majority of Nigeria’s parliament, in line with the wishes of the Nigerian people. This happened shortly after a study of 39 nations around the world by the U.S. Pew Research Center came up with a finding which indicated that 98 percent of Nigerians were opposed to the idea of Gay Marriage.
Immediately after I took this patriotic action, my government came under almost unbearable pressure from Mr. Cameron, who reached me through envoys, and made subtle and not so subtle threats against me and my government.
In fact, meetings were held at the Obama White House and at the Portcullis House in Parliament UK, with the then Nigerian opposition to disparage me, after I had signed the Same-Sex Marriage Prohibition Bill into law.
On the issue of corruption, it suffices to say that Mr. Cameron is not as competent as Transparency International, which is globally acknowledged as the adjudicator of who is corrupt and who is not.
During my administration, in 2014, Nigeria made her best ever improvement on the annual Transparency International Corruption Perception Index, moving from 144 the previous year, to 136, an 8 point improvement. As a nation, we have not made such improvements on the CPI before or after 2014.
In line with these facts, I would urge the public to take Mr. Cameron’s accusations with a grain of salt. I will not be the first person to accuse him of lying on account of this book, and with the reactions in the UK so far, I definitely will not be the last.
Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, Chairman of the Goodluck Jonathan Foundation and President of Nigeria 2010-2015.
Former British Prime Minister David Cameron said Friday he had no regrets about launching the Brexit referendum but accused current PM Boris Johnson of behaving “appallingly” during the pre-vote campaigning.
Cameron, 52, who led the failed Remain campaign for Britain to stay in the European Union, told The Times newspaper that the tortuous Brexit negotiations were “painful to watch” — and losing office left him “hugely depressed”.
Prime minister for six years, Cameron has largely kept his counsel since he left office following the 2016 Brexit referendum.
His long-awaited memoir, “For The Record”, is due out on Thursday.
Cameron said current Prime Minister Boris Johnson — an old schoolfriend — behaved “appallingly” during as head of the successful Leave campaign ahead of the referendum.
The former premier said a no-deal Brexit would be a bad outcome and that he would have backed the withdrawal agreement rejected by MPs.
Britain is due to leave the EU on October 31.
Cameron told The Times that a referendum on Britain’s relationship with the EU had long been promised by politicians and the bitter divisions between Leavers and Remainers now gripping Britain were there long before the seismic vote.
“The country was divided whether we should be in the EU before the referendum,” Cameron said.
“This issue needed to be addressed and I thought a referendum was coming, so better to try to get some reforms we needed and have a referendum.
“But I accept that you know, that effort failed. I do understand some people are very angry because they didn’t want to leave the EU. Neither did I.”
The book contains two chapters logging his regrets over his pre-referendum negotiations with other EU leaders, and over the campaign itself.
“Every single day I think about it, the referendum and the fact that we lost and the consequences and the things that could have been done differently, and I worry desperately about what is going to happen next,” said Cameron.
“It’s painful for the country and it’s painful to watch.”
Cameron said Johnson had been torn over whether to back Leave or Remain but was tempted by the chance to lead the Leave camp — and was stunned to end up winning.
Johnson and Brexit no-deal planner Michael Gove, who had been a Cameron loyalist, led the Leave campaign.
In his book, Cameron writes that the pair behaved “appallingly”.
“They were trashing the government of which they were a part, effectively,” Cameron told The Times.
“I’ve spoken to the prime minister a little bit, mainly through texts, but Michael was a very good friend. So that has been more difficult,” he said.
Cameron said Johnson’s recent move to expel anti-no-deal MPs from the governing Conservative Party and shutting down parliament for five weeks had rebounded.
“I didn’t support either of those things. Neither do I think a no-deal Brexit is a good idea,” he said.
Cameron said a second referendum might yet take place as a way to break the Brexit impasse.
“You can’t rule things out right now because you’ve got to find some way of unblocking the blockage,” he said.
The Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) campaign group, have reconvened at the Unity Park Abuja, in an effort to further urge the government to step up its search for the remaining abducted Chibok school girls.
The Co-convener of the group, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, says members should continue their week long protest not minding the threats of the police.
On January 8, 2017, it became 1,000 days since 276 girls were abducted by Boko Haram militants from Government Secondary School, Chibok, Borno state.
Some of them have since been released while others managed to escape, but at least 195 girls are still in captivity.
Their abduction drew international attention to the activities of the armed group in Nigeria’s north-east region, with several world leaders including former British Prime Minister, David Cameron, calling for the girls’ release.
In a statement by the Special Adviser to the President, Mr Femi Adesina, Buhari said:
“We are grateful to God that on this landmark day, we are not completely in the depths of despair, but buoyed with hope that our daughters will yet rejoin their families and loved ones.
“Three of them have been recovered by our diligent military, while the freedom of 21 others was secured through engagement with their captors. We are hopeful that many more will still return as soon as practicable”.
He then reiterated his pledge, pronounced many times in the past, that government would not spare any effort to reunite the girls with their families.
It does seem like the ghost of former Libyan dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, is coming back to haunt western leaders as a UK parliamentary report sternly criticised the intervention by Britain and France that led to the 2011 Libyan revolution.
The Foreign Affairs Committee accused the former UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, of lacking a coherent strategy for the air campaign.
It said the intervention was flawed as it lacked “accurate intelligence”, and that it led to the emergence of the Islamic State in North Africa.
However, BBC said the UK government insisted it had been an international decision to intervene.
According to the foreign office, the action had been called for by the Arab League and authorised by the UN Security Council.
United Kingdom Prime Minister, Theresa May, has asked Britain to be prepared for some “difficult times” ahead, even as the country leaves the European Union.
In her first major interview since taking office, Mrs May warned that although the economy has gone against negative predictions, Brexit would not be “plain sailing” for the UK, adding that formal EU talks will not begin until 2017.
The former home secretary, became Prime Minister after David Cameron resigned in the wake of the EU referendum hence the Brexit process is likely to dominate the first years of Mrs May’s premiership.
According to her, Britain’s economy will suffer as a result of the decision to leave the European Union despite signs in recent economic data that the impact has not been as severe as some predicted.
However she has expressed optimism about new opportunities for Britain outside the EU saying, Britain will “make a success” of leaving the EU.
Mrs May has also ruled out a snap election, on claims that the UK needs “stability”.
British Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday said serving as Prime Minister was his greatest honour.
Mr Cameron made the statement while addressing a crowd outside 10 Downing Street, before heading to Buckingham Palace to tender his resignation to the Queen.
The outgoing Prime Minister urged his successor, Theresa May, to keep Britain close to the European Union, even as she embarks on the monumental task of ending four decades of membership.
Cameron is stepping down after Britons rejected his entreaties and voted to leave the EU in a referendum last month, severely undermining European efforts to forge greater unity and creating economic uncertainty across the 28-nation bloc.
“My advice to my successor, who is a brilliant negotiator, is that we should try to be as close to the European Union as we can be for the benefits of trade, cooperation and of security,” he told parliament in his last appearance before resigning.
“The Channel will not get any wider once we leave the European Union, and that is the relationship we should seek.
Cameron said the government was working hard to ensure that an estimated 3 million EU citizens can stay in Britain, but this would depend on reciprocal rights for Britons in Europe.
He took the opportunity to trumpet his government’s achievements in generating one of the fastest growth rates among western economies, chopping the budget deficit, creating 2.5 million jobs and legalizing gay marriage.
Mr Cameron said being prime minister had been “the greatest honour” of his life as he prepared to formally resign.
Flanked by his wife and children in Downing Street, the PM said the UK was “much stronger” than when he took over.
He is now going to Buckingham Palace to tender his resignation to the Queen, who will then formally appoint Theresa May as his replacement.
David Cameron, who is to tender his resignation to the Queen on Wednesday, leaving Theresa May, home secretary since 2010, to appoint her own ministerial team.
Theresa May said she is “honoured and humbled” to be taking over and pledged to make a success of the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union.
Mrs Leadsom’s surprise announcement left Mrs May, who had been the front runner, as the only remaining candidate to take over the leadership of the Conservative Party and, therefore, also become prime minister.
British Prime Minister, David Cameron, says he is resigning on Wednesday, making way for home Secretary, Theresa May, the only remaining candidate in the Conservative Leadership race, to become Prime Minister and Tory leader.
As a result, the planned vote of the party’s 150,000 members will not take place.
Before Mr Cameron can resign, he will see the Queen to tender his resignation, and advise her to call for the person she thinks is best placed to command the confidence of the House of Commons.
At a press conference, where he made the announcement, Mr Cameron said it is clear Theresa May has ‘the overwhelming support’ of Conservative Lawmakers, and that rival in the race, Andrea Leadsom, made the right decision to withdraw from the race, ending the Conservative Party’s leadership race.
Leadsom withdrew after a weekend uproar over comments she made suggesting that being a mother would be an advantage in the job.
It wasn’t clear whether the flap affected her decision to drop out. She said simply that she did not believe she had sufficient support within the party to remain in the race.
The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) says “for the moment the United Kingdom remains bound by its obligations under the domestic and International Refugee Law”.
Addressing reporters on Friday in relation to the United Kingdom’s referendum on its exit from the European Union, the spokesperson for UNHCR, Adrian Edwards, said that “the outcome of the referendum doesn’t affect UK’s obligations”.
“The 1951 Refugee Convention still, still applies. The outcome of this referendum doesn’t have bearing on that at the moment. The International Refugee Convention, its obligation, the UK’s obligations to that, but domestically under its own laws and to international law weren’t part of this referendum,” Mr Edwards stressed.
He said that the agency would continue to watch.
On his part, the spokesperson for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), Joel Millmann, said that “the referendum results is a process that has actually started now and not concluded”.
“As of now the discussions and negotiations will start on how the relationship between the UK and the EU will look on all policy areas.
“IOM respects the sovereign wishes of the British electorate by reminding all that manage migration and migration governance is a process of ensuring and improving safe legal and secure migration for all,” he told reporters.
British electorates had in a referendum voted for an exit from the European Union, a position that Prime Minister David Cameron was not in support of.
After the result of the referendum was in favour of an exit, Mr Cameron resigned as the Prime Minister but said he would leave office after three months to “steady the ship”.
The President who made this known in a statement on Friday, emphasised that by “putting the will of the people before his political future, the Prime Minister proved himself to be a selfless leader with respect for democracy and voter sovereignty”.
Consequent to the Brexit vote, the EU has given indication that the first meeting of the UK vote will hold on Wednesday, June 29.