SaharaReporters citizen journalists were on the scene as former President Goodluck Jonathan arrived in Yenagoa, the capital city of his home State of Bayelsa.
The former president publically announced that he wished to settle in his hometown Otuoke in Bayelsa State a few days ago.
Mr. Jonathan was met by a jubilant crowd of supporters, from across the six States of the Niger Delta region. The former president was accompanied by his wife, Patience Jonathan, despite previous reports that the Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan were quarrelling because she expressed little interest in returning to Bayelsa State.
Mr. Jonathan was also accompanied by Ondo State Governor Olusegun Mimiko, the Bayelsa State Governor Seriake Dickson, along with other dignitaries.
Former President Jonathan told the crowd that he was short of words to express his feelings. He also added that thought he would be booed and cursed at by the people for some decisions he made, and the lack of development in Bayelsa State.
He told that crowd that, “because you are exposed to the high office, and the thought that you may not have satisfied the people, sometimes you think they will curse you or boo you. But instead, the people have decided to celebrate me.”
The former president acknowledged the role played by some political leaders in the State for his emergence as a politician. He said he had wondered that if he had stayed in Bayelsa, he would have done better as a Governor, “but I left to allow others grow politically.”
Mr. Jonathan announced his plans after leaving office, and said that, “Nigerians have given me so much and the only thing I can do with the rest of my life is to dedicate myself to peace building. We need peace and development. Political crises don’t bring development. I believe the new administration will work with everybody. I am happy the new President said he does not belong to any clique.”
The Bayelsa State Governor Dickson said that, “we are grateful to the Party and the political class for giving Jonathan opportunity to serve, and such service he did well. He is our celebrated leader and hero of democracy.”
He added that, “those people who Bayelsa and Ijaw Nation is down. Don’t laugh yet. We may be down and not out.”
After a brief reception in Yenagoa, Mr. Jonathan will retire back to his hometown in Otuoke.