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3 Aug 2016

Why I did not move against Babangida when he plot to overthrow me - Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari, said he was aware Ibrahim Babangida was planning to overthrow him in 1985 but did not move against him in order to avert bloodshed.

Buhari became head of state on December 31, 1983 after the military overthrew the elected government of Shehu Shagari.

But on August 27, 1985, Buhari himself was overthrown by Babangida, his chief of army staff and key actor in the 1983 coup.

“He brought the news that he went to Kano and people complained that I pulled a pistol during a council meeting. I said Ibro ─ I called him Ibro because I was just senior to him by a few months ─ I said whoever wants to sit on this chair let him come and sit here. And he decided to do it.”

Reminded that the punishment for coup making was death and he could have put Babangida on trial, Buhari replied: “Yes. Remember how many people he killed subsequently for trying to overthrow him? But when I came in, there was no bloodshed. I think a couple of policemen were killed and [Brigadier Ibrahim] Bako also died in an ambush.

“But deliberately, nobody was killed. I was in the front, the real front in the Nigerian civil war. I had seen enough of death and I know what God means by human life. Any human being, Godvalues their life. And anybody who hopes to meet God, he should be careful about killing.

“When there is law and due process of law took place, the question is clear. Like the cocaine convicts that were executed, the decision was taken in supreme military council.”

(Culled from TheCable)
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