Abacha loot is a media creation, says Bamaiyi
Former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. General Ishaya Bamayi(rtd )has described Abacha loot as a media creation, insisting that former Head of State, General Sanni Abacha did not loot the nation’s treasury as many Nigerians have been made to believe.
The former COAS said this at a book launch and public presentation of the personal account of his military career and momentous events including issues behind the move to secure the release of Chief M. K. O. Abiola, the workings of Abacha’s inner cabinet, failed coup incidents and details of the said loot.
Bamaiyi said while he agrees that former President Goodluck Jonathan had asked President Muhammadu Buhari to look into the matter, he argued that Jonathan was not an insider in the Abacha government like Buhari and that was why foreign countries would not listen to him on the release of the funds.
He noted that the late Abacha decided that the monies should be kept in places where they could be easily accessed.His words: “I am not defending Abacha. I am not saying things did not go wrong. What I know is that we sat down and agreed that the monies should be kept in a place so that we can have access to them. I don’t know if something else happened after that time.
“If you remember, we had problems in Sierra Leone and Liberia once and it was monies from the Abacha regime that we used to buy weapons and ammunition to help those countries fight.”
Bamaiyi said that Abacha did very well for the country, adding that if Nigerians see him from the bad aspect, they should also look at his good aspect and remember him for the good things he did for the country.
Former Head of state and the chairman of the occasion, General Yakubu Gowon (rtd) in his remarks, commended Bamaiyi for the spirit and candour with which he rendered his experiences in the book.