Jonathan Calls Obasanjo ‘Baba’, Abati Says, Accuses Asari-Dokubo of “Crab Mentality”

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo
By SaharaReporters, New York

The Presidency said on Sunday that President Goodluck Jonathan has utmost respect for former President Olusegun Obasanjo and even call him Baba (father).

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, stated this in an interview with State House correspondents in Abuja.
He said it was therefore wrong for the Leader of the Niger Delta Volunteer Force, Mujaheed Asari- Dokubo to have said that Jonathan was “fighting” Obasanjo.

Abati then diagnosed Asari-Dokubo of suffering from ‘crab mentality’.

“I read that interview granted by Asari-Dokubo and I was quite surprised that he would talk like that because as he himself admitted in that interview, he is close to government. And his interview was full of proverbs.

“So, I don’t know whether it is a wise thing for you to be a member of the house and then for you to stand outside and urinate into that same house,” the spokesman said, as the government labours to close the gap between Mr. Jonathan and Obasanjo.

“The president has the utmost respect for the former president whom he regards as his father. He even calls him Baba. And I don’t think anybody can say he has any evidence anywhere where the president has been disrespectful to the elderly man.”

"So, those things that you see in the newspapers about people saying President Jonathan and former President Obasanjo are quarreling are exaggerated. They do not reflect the truth. He (Asari-Dokubo) claims that there is a rift between President Jonathan and former President Obasanjo; so, you can see that the whole of that commentary is based on a wrong premise”.

On Asari-Dokubo’s allegation that Jonathan is surrounded by greedy people who have refused other Nigerians access to the president, Abati turned to crab theory to explain that people are simply trying to pull down his boss.  

“What is that crab theory all about? If you put a number of crabs in a bucket and one of them tries to go to the top, the other crabs will be struggling to pull that one that is trying to go to the top down.  They will keep reminding that top crab that you are one of us; this is where you belong and you cannot leave us; we are together.

“When you translate that crab theory into the governance arena, you find that it puts people who are in leadership position under enormous pressure because there are too many other persons saying they don’t want progress because they all want to be at the same level.”

Having said that, Abati turned around and issued what seems to be a direct contradiction, saying that the Asari-Dokubo interview is consistent with the principle of freedom of speech.  He told the correspondents that it was about making noise and gaining attention, and that the statements do not reflects Asari-Dokubo’s innermost feelings about the Jonathan administration and the President Jonathan in particular.

“I believe that he, having been a very strong supporter of the administration and who has been on record as having saying a lot of positive things about the administration, having made whatever point he has now made, will also see the need to be consistent, honest and truthful, and to see the big picture and to worry less about greedy people who are preventing other Ijaws, as he seems to be making out, from reaching the president because at the end of the day, President Jonathan is not running an Ijaw project.”

Jonathan, said Abati, is running a ‘Nigerian project’ and is a man who is very conscious of his place in history.

According to the spokesman, “That is the man Nigerians voted for and all of us, whether we are his kinsmen or we are his staff or we are his friends, I think we should focus more on the Nigerian project, the Nigerian assignment that President Jonathan has been given and worry less about insinuations like all these people are blocking me from having access, he has forgotten his brothers, he is arguing with a particular person.”

He restated that President Jonathan has no problems with Obasanjo, the man Nigerians accuse of inflicting Jonathan on Nigeria, and that they have an “excellent relationship.”

As with Jonathan himself, Abati did not go beyond these generalizations to comment on the heavy criticisms that Obasanjo has inflicted on Jonathan in the past few months.

Obasanjo has openly criticized Jonathan’s handling of the Boko Haram crisis, presenting him as weak and confused.  It will be recalled that early this year, Jonathan promised to defeat the militants by June, a promise that he not only failed to keep, but which seemed to elevate the violence.  
Obasanjo has also lampooned Jonathan’s so-called fight against corruption, warning that Jonathan’s incompetence has seen blossoming unemployment in the country that could trigger a revolution.  

Critics say that Abati’s lengthy defence of his boss is a desperate ploy that simply compounds the situation as it demonstrates that the Jonathan administration lacks understanding, integrity, and answers.

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Abati is a deranged animal

Abati is a deranged animal. Instead of telling Nigerians about how to reduce unemployment rate from a double digit of 25% to a single digit of 0-9%, he is there telling us about a rift between Obasanjo and Jonathan. Is this rift Nigeria's problem? Who cares if they jump into the lagoon? I think Abati has lost sence of decency and I'd like him to confirm to Nigerians how many jobs were created in 2012. These are the things we'd be discussing, not rift between two zoo animals.

Jonathan-Obasanjo feud


what do you expect of a dunce

what do you expect of a dunce and greedy journalist who has built his career over the years through compromise and brown envelops, he is a man that was forced into the profession of journalism by greed and nothing short, and now the opportunity for wild agrandisement has presented itself and you expect him to do otherwise, Nigerians must have a rethink.

And for his master Johnathan, he is making sure he never lacks shoes again. North or south it is just a matter of time, the bubble will burst.

Abati the fool, GEJ the bigger fool

Reuben "Gorilla Face" Abati has simply run out of ideas like his mugu boss "GEJ". Imagine the goon GEJ promising Nigerians a better 2013. I could not stop laughing at his naiveness. The broad nosed fool from Otuoke must have taken a shot of his usual Kai-Kai. I cannt wait for 2015 to come so we kick this bovine troglodyte of primordal times out of office.

-Ernesto Che

Past Tense

All these presidential media advisers are funny. Late Yaradua had his own and it is now past tense. Soon this president who said he does not give a damn will soon be past tense as well. In fact as he begins to campaign for 2012, he begins to write his past tense.
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No Love Lost

There is no love lost between OBJ and GEJ, As far as we are concern, OBJ must support GEJ to fight corruption to as logical conclusion.

Jonathan & Obasanjo

The reality is that Obasanjo,Jonathan, Anenih, Abati and Oritjesafor are bads of the same feather that flock together under various organisations like egbessu, ogboni, boko haram and others. Their umbrella organisation is the PDP. It is only die hard tribalists, religious fanatics and hypocritical elite that continue to support them.

OBJ Leave Jonathan alone

Is it now that obj will say Jonathan is incompetent.Is he not the one that choose him as running mate to late Yar'adua or is it because he is not dancing to your tune? so please leave him alone.

Cynical Nigerians

Most of the comments here sound cynic, they look like paid comments to paint the Jonathan administration ineffective. Well you can't blame Nigerains from being too cynical due to years of crazy and tyrannical military rule that legalized corruption. Now Nigerians want an instant magic to take them to the promised land. They are impatient, True we are free to express our freedom of speech but to distort the truth willingly is bad. Truth be told Nigerians are hard to please even when you are effective. I believe Jonathan deserves commendation and we are to support him in the area of the identified weakness in the government.

Representation is a game of

Representation is a game of numbers.Do you want the entire SS an SE that has a population less than NW have equal representation in the National Assembly,that's impossible.Take heart and follow the majority,it happens world over,Nigeria can not be an exception.

Jonathan Calls Obasanjo ‘Baba’, Abati Says, Accuses Asari-Dokubo

Reuben, That Asari is a benefactor of the govt does not suggest he can not be critical. He is not a sycophant yes member. He was advocating for better advise from Jonathan's advisers. Spinning his criticism and not making constructive use of it is at best being disingenious.

Your job description shld include.
Daily live briefing to Nigerians through Villa press corps.Entailing:

a. taking questions and answers on topical issues that affect Nigerians. The last presidential media chat had the president taking questions you could've handled in a daily briefing to avoid embarrasment. You are the image maker of the president and must package him before he appears b4 the camera. There is always a backlash after Jonathan appears b4 the camera. Even Obama gets packaged with rehearsals before he faces the camera.
b. briefing Nigerians on the president's agenda for the day, ie visitors ,calls made to world leaders etc, other things on the agenda for the day are ur core functions.

Reuben, why all these?

Why would Reuben labour so hard on a trivial matter such as this when there are more important & urgent matters to be addressed in the polity? He should tell us why our refineries are still down; why our roads are not fixed; why our elites still shun our hospitals; why our politicians send their children to Ghana for education; so many why's. Reuben should stop inundating us with frivolities. If he is idle, he should go back to writing articles in the Guardian. We are not interested in who is having quarrels with who!



Asare Dokubo, is gradually

Asare Dokubo, is gradually falling into d same regional trap that Henry Okah, fell for when he was tricked by dem to assert himself as champion of resource control. So had to align with their fake oppressive political visions of these major ethnic groups. Can Asare Dokubo tell us whether the tribes he wants to sell the SS to, ever came to his aid while he was in the gulag of OBJ and Yara Adua? Abacha did not hang Ken Saro Wiwa because the North wanted him dead! IBB did not cancel the June 12 elections to appease the Fulani North! Never! It was those regional vultures from d South, with no clear vision for 9ja, that urged Abacha to kill Ken saro wiwa. They were the same vindictive humans making fun of the dead spirit of Azazi & Yakowa that forced and IBB to annul June 12. The gluttons who voted for OBJ instead of late Gani-now wants to use GEJ to open their regional doors that were closed to indigenes of the SS 4 over 52 yrs-2 d spirit of danfodio and not even theirs-animals

Jonah u are wasting time in aso rock-time for us to split

Name the achievements of OBJ so that we can debate them. Was it the bombing of Odi, which led to the death of over 5,000 humans, Zaki biam or Umechem or d arrest of Alams? Its time OBJ is told to stop running his mouth wild in public. Bush & Clinton does not go about chasing Obama in the white house with their mouths. D USA, is also faced with lots of security challenges. But hardly do u see them abuse Obama d way Gej is being insulted by the IBOS, FULANIS, most especially the Yorubas! As far as the elites of these major ethnic groups are concerned, GEJ has leprosy of the brain, the hand, feet and that of the anus. So he is not supposed to even board an air craft not to talk of a dug out canoe or sleep in aso rock. David West, Ibori, Ibru, Boro, Alams and Kensarowiwa went through the same experience. Sadly some clowns from the SS, are being deceived and hired as advocate 4 despots like Buhari! We voted 4 their oil and not GEJ-animals

silly people

God will soon wipe you people out of the surface of the earth.......shameless bastards

We should be concerned with the state of things in Nigeria! (4)

Orubebe keeps cropping up in all that is foul (fraudulently acquired home in Abuja) about GEJ's government

Let Ekwueme have the last say:
"I don’t think there is anybody who was here in 1960 when the Union Jack was lowered and the Nigerian flag raised up that will not be concerned with the state of things in the country. Those of us who were there at Tafawa Balewa Square when the Nigerian flag was raised are disappointed with the current state of Nigeria.

Yes. Nigerian Politicians behave like this shaggy character: "It wasn't you (alright)" Despite what Nigerians see daily! We gave OUR POLITICIANS extra key to our treasury. They should watch out in 2013!

Merry Christmas all, DESPITE what we are going through!

We should be concerned with the state of things in Nigeria! (3)

A] "President Goodluck Jonathan has urged Nigerians to forget the current challenges, confronting the country, pledging his administration would perform better in 2013. He said the New Year would better the lots of Nigerians in all aspects and urged Nigerians not to lose hope because he had resolved with his cabinet to make significant changes"

3. It is some of the same cabinet members and GEJ's Associates that are the dross in our silverware.

"Despite his indictment, Mr. Anenih has now been appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan to head the NPA board.
"Tony Anenih,.. does not have a clean past in managing public funds, a 2009 senate report said.
The current Petroleum minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, who – as minister of Transportation and Works – literally wept while inspecting the condition of the Benin-Ore road, was also indicted in the report."

We should be concerned with the state of things in Nigeria! (2)

2. Where is the infrastructure he promised? Promises! Promises! Promises!

a) Kalu “When Jonathan told the world in Onitsha that the first bridge was constructed under an Azikiwe[Dr.Nnamdi Azikiwe]and another Azikiwe[President Jonathan] would put up a second one, I believed him. But I just want him to come over after work, between December 24, 2012 and January 15, 2013 to see for himself what his country men are going through despite money allocated in...

b)"No fewer than 38 electricity generating turbines are grounded in various power plants in the country, Vanguard investigations can reveal."

Yet Jonathan keeps telling us that we hang on to our $2 a day income, that tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow never comes!!!

He has to clearly show Nigerians that he understands the dynamics of development, - curbing corruption. Unless the treasury basket is plugged, he can never water the vegetable gardens!

Sycophancy a big issue in Nigeria!

I agree with you Bashir, even Abati. I cannot but imagine that most people who criticize the government are just sycophants looking for a spot in Government to unleash themselves. Just like Bola Ige during the time of NADECO, and once he had the opportunity in Government he looted Lagos State blind, and he is still looting while Fashola is clueless. In my wildest dream i cant imagine Reuben Abati is one of them, God please come to the aid of the masses, strike all sycophants, past and current leaders who have refused to make our nation great.

We should be concerned with the state of things in Nigeria! (1)

1 GEJ is the one pulling his government down.

Abati, instead of you clearing your statements with GEJ, it should be the other way round. I advise that he clears his comments with you, for each time he opens his mouth, I cringe!

"Former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Prince Bolasodun Ajibola, SAN, has described President Goodluck Jonathan’s recent statement to the effect that the former governor of Bayelsa State, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, was his political benefactor as an insult to Nigerians.
...said Jonathan was wrong to have described ‘’an ex-convict’’ as his benefactor and asked him to 'say it again'."

Only recently he said his mandate was "not to reduce poverty but create wealth" for the likes of Tompolo and of recent I thought it included Dokubo and his wife!

Stilo, You are speaking for


You are speaking for yourself. I am glad we voted en-mass for President Jonathan and he won big. There is no way we from the SS SE can vote in Jihadist Buhari and he comes back to behead us one by one.

For you that voted for Buhari it is like closing your nose and hugging the pig.

All along good people have

All along good people have been speculating that my brother Jonathan is an offspring of President Obasanjo. Reliable sources have it that baba begot Jona when he was deployed in the former Eastern Region before the war. We don't have any problem with that, otherwise how on earth would we get a president from the former Eastern Region?

All in all this is a confirmation that my brother Jonathan is indeed omo baba.


I think Obasanjo should just leave Nigerians alone. We have had enough of this man. It is about time to permanently retire him from public life, period! As for Dokubo, they sooner his types realize the president is not the president of the so called 'Ijaw nation' the better. That goes to the Ijaw supporters of the president on this site too. Should they insist on their son being a sectional president, people are more than willing to help move him back to baysela. It is a disservice to their son when they keep up whining in public about no access to him. Maybe the president don't want to see them, for what ever reason. To be perfectly honest I don't care about their plight. What interest me is what to do about the corruption culture in Nigeria and how to move forward. As for Abati, as always he is full of crap or should I say crabs?

GEJ is indeed a lost case

Proverbs 25: 4-5

4 Remove the impurities from silver,
and the sterling will be ready for the silversmith.
5 Remove the wicked from the king’s court,
and his reign will be made secure by justice.

I did not say this:

"Obasanjo has openly criticized Jonathan’s handling of the Boko Haram crisis, presenting him as weak and confused. It will be recalled that early this year, Jonathan promised to defeat the militants by June, a promise that he not only failed to keep, but which seemed to elevate the violence.
Obasanjo has also lampooned Jonathan’s so-called fight against corruption, warning that Jonathan’s incompetence has seen blossoming unemployment in the country that could trigger a revolution."

GEJ can never be refined with Anenih, Okupe, Diezani and all other apologist such as TURNCOAT Abati hanging around Aso rock; the most corruption ridden address in the world!

This Abati grows into a bigger dunce every day!

Once a "respected" public commentator, Abati has become exposed by the greed and sycophancy of public office. Very sad.


like father like son

Last warning for Reuben

Great Jona is weak, clueless, etc ...but he doesn't give a damn. He is in charge & with his resource control hat, "Nothing spoil".

I sympathize with SH, abati & others who cannot see beyond their nostrils. Great Jona is a full blooded SS citizen. Not a Yoruba. I need not educate you of our innate and noble virtues as epitomized by Isaac Adaka Boro, Professor (Major)Mukoro, Ken Wiwa,Dokubo, Tompolo, Ateke Tom etc.

Becos we did u a favour by givin u a liars job in Aso Rock, you now see an opportunity to use your mouth to say whatever u like without permission. Rueben, take this as ur last warning.

BH can continue to bomb the North. Let them kill a chicken anywhere on SS&SE territory. Then we shall let them know that bombs have categories, not the cheap IEDs and car batteries they assemble.

Long live the Unite States of The SS&SE

President Jonathan, Nigeria's political structure is a fraud. Re

Nigeria's 36 states structure that allows once one region north a whooping 19 states plus Abuja is a fraud. The once three regions south was allowed only 17 states. Thus the overwhelming number of legislators from the north makes it next to impossible for any interests of the south be implemented or entrenched in the constitution.
President Jonathan must know that OBJ as president tried through his National Political Reforms Conference to make amends on the structure and governing system of Nigeria. President Jonathan must make a bigger attempt than OBJ's to bring about an equitable political structure and governance system for Nigeria. GEJ must not fail in this regard. Nigeria's disunity was not caused by Boko Haram, it is its rigged political structure and governance system.

Jonathan Calls Obasanjo Baba

For one second, Reuben, can you make any sense of this your litany of justifications, on behalf of such a clueless Jonathan? This is vintage Reuben Abati- such a descent to the lowest level of sophistry and sycophancy.Truly pathetic. It's only Nigerians who can help lift their own sorry fate out of this hole.Or else, of course, let's resort to our habitual consoling expression-'May God help Nigeria'. The Nigerian edifice has fallen alright,but Reuben, you are such a sorry case, indeed.

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