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$2.1 Billion Arms Scandal; I Will Remain Silent- Jonathan

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan smiles during a press conference at the South African Parliament in Cape Town, on May 7, 2013. The leaders of Africa's two biggest economies, South Africa and Nigeria, pledged closer ties on Tuesday in what was hailed as a milestone in a sometime patchy relationship. President Jacob Zuma rolled out a red carpet for his counterpart Goodluck Jonathan as ministers signed nine sectoral pacts covering oil and gas, power, defence and communication. AFP PHOTO / RODGER BOSCH

Former President Goodluck Jonathan says he would not comment on the current $2.1bn arms scandal involving the former national security adviser and other members of the former ruling party  now because the matter is in court.

 The former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki; the National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Olisa Metuh, and others are currently standing trial for their alleged role in the scam.

 Goodluck Jonathan, however, said in due time, he would tell his own side of the story.

The former President, who in a series of tweets of the micro blogging site Twitter, said, “My voice will certainly be heard at the appropriate time regarding the alleged arms funds mismanagement. I would not want to interfere with the proceedings by the judicial system that my administration worked tirelessly to strengthen.”

“My post-presidential focus is advancing democracy and good governance in Africa. If we do not spend billions to educate Africa’s youths today, we will spend it fighting insecurity tomorrow.”

Speaking separately on ‘Security, Education and Development in Africa’ at the Geneva Press Club in Switzerland, on Wednesday, Jonathan lamented the high rate of illiteracy in the North.

He said poor education was one of the factors promoting insecurity.

The former President, however, praised President Muhammadu Buhari for giving education a top priority in the 2016 budget.

Jonathan said, “Of course, charity begins at home and for the future, what Nigeria needs is to focus on making education a priority. Thankfully, the administration that succeeded mine in its first budget appears to have seen wisdom in continuing the practice of giving education the highest allocation. This is commendable.

“I feel that what people in my position, statesmen and former leaders, ought to be doing is to help build consensus all over Africa, to ensure that certain issues should not be politicised.

“Education is one of those issues. If former African leaders can form themselves into an advisory group to gently impress on incumbent leaders the necessity of meeting the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation recommended allocation of 26 per cent of a nation’s annual budget on education, I am certain that Africa will make geometric progress in meeting her Millennium Development Goals and improving on every index of the Human Development Index.”

The former President said he fought terrorism to a large extent and ensured that many perpetrators were arrested, prosecuted and jailed.

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