President Muhammadu Buhari may have stirred the hornets nest when yesterday, he declared he was removed from office on August 27, 1985 because he was planning to purge the military hierarchy of corruption.
He specifically pointed a finger at two of his top subordinates in the army then, former Chief of Army Staff, General Ibrahim Babangida and two-time National Security Adviser (NSA), General Aliyu Gusau, as arrowheads who toppled his military government in August 1985 to save themselves from his wrath.
Buhari in the ongoing anti-corruption battle, seems to have finally taken on the military, 31 years after.In an interview published in the current edition of The Interview magazine, Buhari challenged Babangida and Gusau to tell the truth as to why they carried out the coup against him.
In a statement on www.theinterview.com.ng, the Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief of The Interview, Azu Ishiekwene, said: “This is one edition that won’t let sleeping dogs lie.”
Azu was part of the top editors of national dailies, who were at the State House to interview the President on the heels of his first anniversary in office.The President was quoted in the statement as having said: “I learnt that Aliyu Gusau, who was in charge of intelligence, took import licence from the Ministry of Commerce which was in charge of supplies and gave it to Alhaji Mai Deribe, a Maiduguri-based businessman, who has since passed on.
“It was worth N100,000, a lot of money at that time. I confronted them and took the case to the Army Council in a memo. I wanted Gusau punished.”Azu’s statement had quoted Babangida as having told The Interview in its December edition that there was nothing in the memo, which, Buhari said he submitted to the Army council.
“Don’t forget that I was one of Buhari’s closest aides. I was the Chief of Army Staff. So, I had an important position, an important role to play within that administration. I don’t think it had to do with a memo,” Babangida said.
But throwing a challenge which revealed that the past may neither have been forgotten nor forgiven, Buhari dares Babangida and Gusau to come clean on why they removed him, asking The Interview to choose whose story to believe.
Source: The Guardian.