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Buhari, Lawan, Atiku, others celebrate Obasanjo at 83

Buhari, Lawan, Atiku, others celebrate Obasanjo at 83

Birthday wishes are pouring in from all corners of the country for Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of Nigeria, who turned 83 on Thursday, March 5.

In a birthday message to Obasanjo ahead of March 5, President Muhammadu Buhari said the former president has lived a life of “courage, dedication and service to Nigeria, Africa, and humanity in general”.

“President Buhari joins family members, friends and associates of the former president in celebrating the milestone, adding that Chief Obasanjo’s commitment to Nigerian nationhood remains outstanding and commendable, while also underscoring his sacrifices for the continent, including standing up for democracy in many countries,” Buhari said in statement signed by Femi Adesina, his media aide.

“As the former president celebrates the auspicious occasion, President Buhari prays that the Almighty God will grant him longer life, good health and strength to keep serving the nation and the continent,” said the statement issued on Wednesday.

Senate President Ahmad Lawan, in a statement by Ola Awoniyi, his media aide, said Obasanjo had served Nigeria with courage, wisdom and sense of history, recalling the elder statesman’s pivotal roles at different epochs in the tasks to keep Nigeria one, stable, democratic and prosperous.

Former President Goodluck Jonathan said Obasanjo had a distinguished record of service and loyalty to Nigeria.

“As a president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, you built bridges of love and unity across the land. As you celebrate, my family prays that God will bless you with more years of glory, honour and sound health,” Jonathan said in a goodwill message on Wednesday.

Atiku Abubakar, who served as vice president for eight years under Obasanjo (1999-2007), praised Obasanjo for having impacted Nigeria positively more than anyone else, both in war and peace situations.

Obasanjo’s role in the Nigeria/Biafra war which was fought to keep the country united is well documented. He served as military head of state from 1976 to 1979 before returning as democratically elected president in 1999.

“I congratulate my father and leader President Olusegun Obasanjo on his 83rd birthday. Your legacy is unassailable and the contributions that you have made to the development of our country over the last 53 years are legion. May God continue to be with you and guide you,” Femi Fani-Kayode wrote to Obasanjo on Twitter.