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Nigeria: Obasanjo Barred From UN Building

New York — Former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, received the shock of his life at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on Tuesday as security operatives attached to the world body refused him and his four aides access into the building.

Our Correspondent who was at the scene unidentified reported that Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, who was a former Special Envoy of the United Nations to the Democratic Republic of Congo, together with his four personal aides were disallowed from gaining entry into the building because of lack of UN Visitor’s Pass.

The former Nigerian President was clearly told by the security operatives at the main entrance of the United Nations that neither he nor any of his aides that he brought there would be allowed to enter since their names were not on the list of guests or delegates expected at the ongoing 65th UN General Assembly.

Another excuse they gave in order to disallow the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was that his duty tour and work contract with the United Nations as the Special Envoy to DR Congo had ended.

They further told Chief Olusegun Obasanjo that he could not enter into the building to see anybody or do anything since he had no binding contract with the authorities of the UN unless he had his name on the list of special visitors or delegates coming to the United Nations for official purposes.

However, President Obasanjo was heard begging the security operatives to let him into the building because he wanted to pay an unofficial visit to a top official of the world body, though he agreed that he only came to the United States to attend the annual Clinton Global Initiative Meeting but decided to visit the United Nations headquarters as a former Special Envoy.

Our Correspondent also reported that all his pleading fell on the deaf ears of the Security Operatives who eventually invited one of their bosses in order to personally address the former Nigerian President.

On siting Chief Obasanjo, the Security Chief (Name Withheld) explained to his junior colleagues that he is a former President of Nigeria and also a former special Envoy of the United Nations to DR Congo.

The Security Chief reportedly begged his lieutenants to allow him get a day’s Visitor’s Pass for Chief Obasanjo to enable him see whoever he wanted to visit within the United Nations building, though he told the former Army General that none of his aides would be allowed to go into the building with him.

After standing at the gate of the United Nations for over 15 minutes, President Olusegun Obasanjo was assisted in getting a day’s Visitor’s Pass and he soberly entered into the building, leaving his aides outside the United Nations premises.

However, in a spot interview with Journalists in New York, former President Olusegun Obasanjo declared that the conspiracy by some politicians from the Northern parts of the country against President Goodluck Jonathan over his decision to run for 2011 Presidential election is not a wrong thing.

Chief Obasanjo stated that “ganging up or not ganging up, factions and alliances are normal parts of politics and there is nothing wrong, what matter is that at the end of the day, whatever the result, we will all accept it.”

Abiodun Oluwarotimi|24 September 2010|Leadership (Abuja)