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Abacha never stole, he saved for Nigeria – Galadima

Galadima was the Director-General, National Maritime Authority during Abacha’s regime.

Alhaji Buba Galadima says General Sani Abacha did not loot any money. [News Digest]
Alhaji Buba Galadima says General Sani Abacha did not loot any money. [News Digest]

Buba Galadima, a former ally of President Muhammadu Buhari, has said that the billions of dollars the late Head of State, General Sani Abacha stashed in foreign banks were not looted.

Galadima in an interview with TheNationnewspaper said Abacha saved the monies abroad to save the country from an impending US sanction during his administration.

The 72-yr-old politician, who was the Director-General, National Maritime Authority during Abacha’s regime said the late Head of State was advised by the then President of Iraq, Saddam Hussein and his counterpart in Libya, Muammar Gaddafi to save the monies in foreign banks.

He said, “I have a completely different idea about what you called Abacha loot. I know as a fact that at that time, Abacha with knowledge of key members of his government, who knew about this money being stacked out, he was rightly advised by some of his colleague presidents around the world.

General Sani Abacha ruled Nigeria between 1993 and 1998.
General Sani Abacha ruled Nigeria between 1993 and 1998.

“Saddam Hussein was one of them. Muammar Gaddafi was one of them. They advised him that there was the likelihood that the US could sanction Nigeria and as such he should save money outside that could last the country, at least, six months, even Nigeria’s account was blocked by the US, there won’t be panic.

I was a key figure in that government. I was one of the so-called Abacha boys if you must know. I was the Director-General, National Maritime Authority, whereby export and import to Nigeria, including crude, were directly coming under my desk. So, am in a position to talk about Abacha and the so-called loot”.

Galadima, however, maintained that those who believe Abacha was a monster are ignorant.

General Sani Abacha ruled Nigeria between 1993 and 1998, but since 1999, Nigeria has been receiving some of the monies he stashed abroad.

On Monday, May 4, 2020, the Nigerian government received a sum of $311 millionlooted from the country’s treasury during the military regime of late Head of State.

Three days after, the United States Embassy in Nigeria revealed that there was another $319m (N121bn) stolen by the late Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha in the United Kingdom and France.

It would also be recalled that in April 2018, the Federal Government announced the receipt of $322.51m from the Swiss government as part of the looted funds.

Switzerland said it returned all the money kept in the country by the late dictator with 1.5 million dollars interest.

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