The former Adviser on National Assembly Matters to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Senator Mohammed Abba Aji, has called on the Federal Government, particularly the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to exonerate the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, from the allegations of siphoning CBN’s funds.
The allegation was said to have been made by a member of the British Parliament and Chairman, Foreign Relations Committee, Mr. Tom Tugendhat.
Former Senator Abba Aji was speaking in Maiduguri. He said Gowon, who had worked tirelessly to unite Nigeria, deserved to be protected against a baseless, unsubstantiated allegation, from a British Parliamentarian, Tugendhat.
Aji, who is also the Secretary of the North East Governors’ Forum, said instead of the Federal Government, CBN, and the Nigerian press to stand for Gowon at a moment like this, all the parties decided to leave him to defend himself.
He warned that such a situation could endanger his life, at 86.
“…I am really surprised to see someone like Tom Tugendhat, a member of the British Parliament and Chairman Foreign Relations Committee raise such unsubstantiated allegations on the floor of the parliament against one of our best respected Head of State, General Gowon, alleging that this gentleman, Gowon left with half of the CBN funds, as if Tugendhat knows how much was in the CBN, how much was taken and how much was left as at then, without tendering documents to prove.”
Aji said that many Nigerians knew the condition when Gowon left for Kampala for the Organization of African Unity, OAU, summit.
“…it was during the summit in Kampala that he was informed that he had been toppled, and records have it that it was the Nigerian delegation and even the staff of the embassy in Kampala that put together the sum of £3000.”
Senator Aji lambasted the Nigerian media for giving the report unwarranted attention.
“…In fact, Gowon should not even open his mouth, we are the witnesses of his integrity in this country, so I want to assure General Gowon that this baseless allegation has not dented his integrity in Nigeria, or in our eyes.
Aji insisted that it was the results of General Gowon’s commitments, that Nigeria is what it is, today.