The damning 11-page letter allegedly written by Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello, first daughter of former President Olusegun Obsanjo, topped the list of trending topics on social media on Wednesday.
In the letter entitled “Open Letter to my Father”, which has since gone viral online, Iyabo purportedly scathingly attacked his father.
While issuing a disclaimer that the controversial letter “is not in support of President Jonathan or APC or any other group or person, but an outpouring from my soul to God”, Iyabo purportedly described his father as self-serving liar and cruel man.
The former senator’s controversial letter came barely nine days after her father slammed the President also in a letter .
But this new development has since stirred a debate online as Nigerians are divided over the authenticity or otherwise of the said letter, moreso that the alleged author of the letter is said to be away abroad.
A former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, who had initially taken to Twitter to deny the authenticity of the letter on behalf of Iyabo backtracked, stating that he was confused as to his initial claim.
He cited various “conflicting reports” as the reason for his sudden change of posture noting that the supposed letter by Iyabo should not sway Nigerians from demanding a reply from Jonathan on the sundry allegations leveled against the President as contained in Obasanjo’s letter.
Fani-Kayode, a former spokesperson of ex-President Obasanjo, said there was no need to start poke-nosing into the “privately family matters” of his former boss, saying he will now rely on whatever is said personally by Iyabo.
“(I) don’t know what to believe about who wrote the letter to Obasanjo published by a national newspaper anymore. Let Iyabo Obasnajo herself talk because there are conflicting reports. I am more interested in the letter that OBJ wrote to GEJ and the issues raised there than OBJ’s private family matters,” Fani-Kayode wrote on his Facebook page.
Also, a former presidential candidate of the National Conscience Party, Chief Dele Momodu, expressed skepticism over the said letter. “If it is true that Iyabo Obasanjo did not pen that controversial letter to her dad, whoever did deserves a Nobel Prize in Literature!” Momodu tweeted.
A prolific Twitter user, Babatunde Rosanwo, aligned himself with the argument of Fani-Kayode and accused the Presidency of attempting to distract Nigerians from the main issues raised by Obasanjo.
He noted that the same scenario played out during the fuel subsidy scandal involving Femi Otedola and House of Representatives Committee saddled with the investigation of the alleged fraud.
He said, “There is no evidence to say Iyabo wrote the letter or not. I am simply saying it should not distract us from national issues at hand. Obasanjo wrote a letter of grave national consequences to the President, “Iyabo” wrote a letter of no such consequences to her father.
“The distraction here is the Presidency and their spin masters wanting you to follow “Iyabo” and forget about Obasanjo’s letter. This Presidency is the master of distraction. The Iyabo letter is for toddlers, it’s a simple pattern.
“The fuel subsidy era brought in Otedola to neutralise Farouk Lawan Committee report. Here too, they are bringing in Iyabo to neutralise ObJ’s letter.”
One Marian Awolowo also wrote on Facebook that the content of the said letter written by Iyabo should not be enough reason to distract Nigerians from the allegations levelled against Jonathan by Obasanjo, adding that the President needed to dignify Nigerians with a response.
Marian said, “I will urge Nigerians never to allow these few malicious evil detractors to win. It is all propaganda tools that have never gotten them anywhere apart from creating untimely death along their path.
“So Nigerians need to be awake and not be distracted,” she wrote. The Presidency has yet to respond to the allegation that it sponsored the campaign, a message on the Twitter page of the Presidential Assistant on New Media stated, “When God fights for a man, the man does not even have to lift a finger!”