By Lawrence Olaoye
President Goodluck Jonathan at the weekend visited the former military President, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB) in his Minna home.
With President at IBB’s home on Saturday were the National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.); his Chief of Staff, Brig. Gen. Jones Arogbofa (retd.); Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Senator Bala Muhammed; former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi and the Director-General of his presidential campaign and former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Dr. Ahmadu Ali among others.
In an interaction with newsmen after a closed door meeting with the retired General, Jonathan explained that he was in Minna to see the former President following his recent return from abroad after medical treatment.
He said he was with Babangida to express his appreciation to him over his leadership and commitment to a unified and peaceful Nigeria.
Calling Babangida his father, Jonathan was happy at the good condition he found the former military President, noting that as a former leader; Babangida possessed the sort of experience needed to tackle the nation’s security challenges.
He said: “First and foremost, I have to use this opportunity to appreciate our leader, President Babangida for his leadership. His commitment to ensuring that this country is united and we leave in peace.
“Of course, you know that this is the end of the year. Within this period, people pay visits. So I have come to visit him. You know he just came back from a hospital abroad, not too long ago.
“Since he came back, we have not seen. I need to see my father to know how he is feeling. I am quite pleased the way I have seen him.
“Of course, you all know that as a nation, we are facing challenges: security challenges all over, not just in the North. Yes, Boko Haram in the North. The South is not safe: commercial kidnapping and robbery.
He is one of our experienced leaders. As somebody who is sitting where he was before, I need to see them from time to time to listen to their suggestions.”
In his remarks, Babangida called for support for the President, saying that he meant well for the country.
He said: “What I will say is simple: The President means well for this country and he is working well for this country.”