Former Aviation Minister and a chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Femi Fani-Kayode, has defended former Military Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, saying he never took half of Central Bank with him to London.
A British parliamentarian, Tom Tugendhat, had on Monday alleged that Gowon took half of the money in Central Bank with him to London after he was overthrown in 1975.
But Fani-Kayode on Tuesday said whatever people might say or feel about Gowon, it is not true that he took half of Central Bank with him when he went on exile to the UK and studied at Warwick University after being removed in a coup by General Murtala Mohammed.
He said: “I have my views about Gowon and what I consider to be his role in the mass murder and genocide of 3 million Igbos during the civil war and I have often expressed it but he was not a thief and neither did he amass wealth for himself when he was Head of State.
“As a matter of fact, he was the darling of the British Government and no Nigerian leader, living or dead, has been as close to successive British Governments as he. This very young British MP is trying to revise history and demonise a man who served and protected British interests in Nigeria when he was in power more than any other and this is most dishonourable and unfair.”
According to Fani-Kayode, the truth was that the greatest looters in the history of humanity were the British themselves and if he must criticise Nigerian leaders it must be done with facts and not fabricating lies in a scurrilous and essentially racist attempt to confirm the stereotyping of every Nigerian and African leader as corrupt.
Adding: “The truth is that even though they pretend and sweep it under the carpet, there are as many corrupt British leaders, government officials and public servants today as there are Nigerian and this has always been the case.”
Furthermore, he said the “difference is that they are not so obvious and brazen and they cover theirs up very well in a very sophisticated banking system which thrives on taking in dirty money and keeping it.
”Whoever this MP is should get his facts right and stick to talking about the #EndSARS protests rather than talk about our history which he evidently knows nothing about.
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