The immediate past president, Goodluck Jonathan, has embarked on at least three projects since he handed over to President Muhammadu Buhari on May 29, 2015.
Speaking with Daily Trust on August 16, Sunday, a close confidant of Jonathan revealed that the ex-president is working hard on his memoirs.
“The former president, for those who know him closely, is not given too much talk.
“He’s kept himself from too much on publicity, but I can tell you that he’s busy writing a book, in which he will recount his experience over the years. He is putting together the records of his administration, his personal files and notes in a research format, with details of how events took place and how decisions were taken. That is why he’s been silent about diverse attacks since he left office. The book will tell his story, and I assure you, many Nigerians will be shocked by its content,” he said.
According to the former aide, the memoir will tell Jonathan’s grass-to-grace story; his political adventures, his experience as vice-president and president, and the presidential election which he lost.
The aide added that apart from writing his memoirs, the former president is setting up a foundation, called the Goodluck Jonathan Foundation, which will promote good government, democracy and engage in humanitarian activities.
“The foundation is not targeting the Niger Delta region alone. Nigerians from all parts of the country will benefit from it. Already he has acquired an office in Abuja, and he’s working closely with local and international consultants on the principles, vision, mission and strategies of the foundation,” he said.
Commenting on the probe of the petroleum sector under the ex-president, the former aide expressed his assurance that nothing would come out of the exercise.
“The former president expected everything that is playing out now. There’s a lot of falsehood being peddled around, and he’s been under pressure to speak but his book will answer many of the questions. All the allegations about billions of dollar being stolen are the same old story, but I tell you, the ex-president doesn’t have a foreign bank account; he doesn’t own a house abroad.
“When he travelled abroad in June, he flew on a commercial flight, Air France from Port Harcourt. He doesn’t have a private jet. The money he spent during the elections was not his own. People donated to the project. The billions of dollar being talked about, where does one keep those sums? So far, no one has accused him directly, so there is no specific allegation for him to deny. Everything revolves around the old $20 billion. Nothing has been traced to anybody, unlike the Abacha loots which were traced to several foreign bank accounts.”
It was also reported that Jonathan is involved in the process of re-engineering the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Some of the party’s leaders blamed the former president and his wife, Dame Patience, for the party’s loss of the presidency after ruling Nigeria for 16 years. Therefore, now Jonathan has been reportedly involved in the efforts to revive the party.
Daily Trust learnt that the first step the ex-president took was to hold a series of meetings with the PDP leaders in London shortly after he left office between June and July, 2015.
During that period, the party’s top officials and some of his former aides reportedly flew to London to discuss the loss of power to the All Progressives Congress and the future steps that should be taken.
Although some politicians described the London meeting as speculation, Reuben Abati, the former president’s spokesman, confirmed it.
“I get tons of positive messages with common questions like “Where are you? What are you doing, Dr. Reuben Abati?” I’ve been participating in the Advanced Management and Leadership Programme of the Oxford University’s Said Business School since the 7th of June. I had a great time discussing Nigerian politics with my boss and former president Jonathan in London over the weekend.”
It is worth mentioning that there were indications that the former president planned to retire from politics and devote his time to God and humanity. However, the leaders of the PDP insisted that if Jonathan quit politics, it would be impossible for the party to rise from its big fall.
“The party’s leaders told him that he’s the only unifying figure and factor in the party at the moment.
“Former president Obasanjo had dumped the party. He should have been the rallying point. Therefore, the party needs former president Jonathan to survive, and that’s the role he’s playing at the moment,” the aide noted.
Meanwhile, the former president and his wife Patience are making frantic efforts to stop the looming massive defection expected to hit the Bayelsa state chapter of the PDP.