“My daughter Iyabo said I was going to die in office” – Olusegun Obasanjo
By Seyi Peters
Following in the steps of his previous memoirs, My Command and Not My Will, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo’s My Watch is more than a story of the Obasanjo Presidency told by the man himself. It is a memoir of a lifetime spent in service to country, of a man who has been destined with the watch of his people.
In a chapter in the book, the Former President revealed that his first child Iyabo, told him he was going to die in office. Obasanjo said Iyabo’s position came up when he informed her and 3 of his other children about his desire to contest the 1999 presidential election after he had consulted almost all those that mattered before joining the presidential race while in New York. Obasanjo said it was ironic that Iyabo became a senator during his tenure, and she was before then a commissioner in Ogun State.
In Obasanjo’s words “My mind was almost made up (to vie for the position of President) but I had to consult with my children. I got four of them together in New York. I told them I was going to decide whether to go into politics or not. Iyabo was the most antagonistic. “She burst out loudly, ‘I know you will join and you will die there and if you die, I will not weep.’
“I told her ‘if I die and you weep, it is for yourself and others, not for me as I will not know you are weeping.’ It is ironic that within 10 years, Iyabo became a Senator and I completed two terms of eight years without a scratch.” Obasanjo further disclosed that of his 4 children in the meeting, it was only Segun who said, “Daddy, you have always said that we must serve God and humanity and if this is the way you have chosen to serve God and humanity, I will pray for you.”