Outgoing Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, has said former President Olusegun Obasanjo was a difficult person,to oppose.He said he threatened him when he was prepared to resign from his government as a minister.
“Baba called me. He said, ‘I will change your ministry, I will hand you over to the incoming President. Can’t you understand?’ I said, ‘Thank you, Baba. It is a privilege but I am going’. He said, ‘You dare not’. I said, ‘I am going’. He said, ‘Okay. Try me’. Do you understand the circumstance?”
Mimiko, who was the Minister of Works under the regime of the former President, said Obasanjo did this in order to dissuade him from vying for the office of governor of Ondo State.
A copy of the book, which would be presented in Akure, the Ondo State capital, on Wednesday
Mimiko stressed that Obasanjo promised to do these when he knew that he (Mimiko) was going to contest against the former Governor of the state, Agagu.
He added that some close associates of the late Agagu, who were in government at the time, also begged him not to leave the cabinet.
Mimiko said when he told Obasanjo that he was leaving his cabinet, he said the ex-President said he should not leave.
Others, who he said asked him not to leave the government of Obasanjo, included Chief Femi Fani-Kayode and Mr. Akin Osuntokun.
Mimiko stated that he did not only leave the cabinet, he also resigned from the Peoples Democratic Party and pitched his tent with the Labour Party.
Although there was no money to run the new party, he added that he was determined to forge ahead.
He said, “You don’t know the situation I was in then. Look, you don’t know Obasanjo. I worked with him. In history, go and check it out. There are not too many people who were able to resign from Obasanjo’s government.
“In fact, you can’t do it. Sir, you can’t just do it. I did not only resign, when I came to the Federal Executive Council after resignation, everybody thought they were seeing a ghost.
“Obasanjo hounded me out of Abuja, virtually. We came out with a new party.
“Anybody that gave N1m then, you can’t imagine how we would celebrate him or her. Four months to election, we were raising money in hundreds of thousands: N100,000; N50,000; N20,000
“I still remember one architect, who sent us a cheque for N1m; we celebrated it. I did not have N1m when I decided to run and challenge Agagu. I did not have N1m anywhere.
“You may not believe it; that is the gospel truth. You get what I am talking about? I was ready to lose. I didn’t care. the people wanted me. I could feel it. I just could touch it. Ask from anybody who served in the cabinet then.
“Yayale Ahmed was Head of Service, Ufot Ekaette was the SGF, General Mohammed was there, Nweke Junior was there. Even people who were not in government: Ask from Akin Osuntokun; ask from Femi Fani-Kayode. They were begging me not to go, saying, ‘Baba threatened you publicly and you still want to go?’ They begged me.