Obasanjo bypassed Tinubu to woo Osinbajo in 2005 – Ogunsakin

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo did not seek the opinion of former Lagos State Governor Bola Tinubu before asking Prof Yemi Osinbajo in 2005 to be attorney-general of the federation, journalist Mustapha Ogunsakin has said.

Ogunsakin’s revelation, made available to newsmen on Friday in Abuja, came as mixed reactions continued to trail Osinbajo’s declaration to run for the office of president in 2023.

“In 2005, President Obasanjo invited Osinbajo to take an appointment as the attorney-general of the Federation after Chief Akin Olujimi left office,” he said.

“Obasanjo saw the sterling qualities and performance that Osinbajo had as attorney general of Lagos. The president without informing Bola Tinubu, the then Lagos State Governor, offered the post to Osinbajo who was then Lagos State attorney-general.

“The first thing Osinbajo did was to inform his principal, Tinubu, who gave him a free hand to take his decision.”

He said that Osinbajo made a request to Obasanjo to release Lagos State Council funds.

“Obasanjo replied that Osinbajo should first take the appointment and then advise him as Attorney-General of the Federation on the matter,” Ogunsakin said.

“Osinbajo went underground and for weeks Obasanjo could no longer reach him. It was obvious to the then-president that Osinbajo deliberately avoided him; he went on to appoint Chief Bayo Ojo as his attorney-general of the federation and minister of justice.

“Osinbajo rejected the position of attorney-general of the federation and minister of justice and stayed with Tinubu; nobody complained then.”

The journalist urged anyone criticising Osinbajo over his presidential ambition to do so based on valid facts.