USA Wikileaks secret cables, reveal that according to Professor Ukandi G. Damachi, Nigeria’s former president, Musa Yar’Adua was poisoned. Yar’Adua died while in office as president of Nigeria in May, 2010.
Professor Ukandi G. Damachi is a friend to US consul, long term confidant to Nigeria’s past president Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida with privy to Nigeria’s government workings inside information.
The Wikileaks cable, of Apr. 2008, reference ID 08LAGOS153, described in Professor Damachi’s narration, that late president Yar’Adua was given poison in his food, “his food was poisoned”, he alleged. Further stating that the president inherited his predecessor, president Obasanjo’s kitchen, and these kitchen staff were likely used to poison Nigeria’s president. The professor further revealed that when president Yar’Adua realized this he fired the Obasanjo kitchen staff.
Quoting Damachi from the US secret cables:
“There are lots of problems in Nigeria.” The first problem, he said, is the President’s illness; “his food was poisoned”, Damachi alleged. Asked whether he meant “food poisoning” or that someone had deliberately poisoned the President’s food, Damachi shrugged, replying “The President inherited Obasanjo’s kitchen staff”; Yar’Adua has now fired them all, and the kitchen has been cleaned out following the incident, Damachi said. At the same time, Damachi went on, the President did attend functions on both the Saturday and Sunday preceding his illness and ate some food at both of them. “What President eats at a function?”, Damachi asked rhetorically. The President was so sick that the day he signed the budget, he was unable to sign a second piece of legislation awaiting his approval…”
Link: http://wikileaks.org/cable/2008/04/08LAGOS153.html; Cable dated 24 Apr. 2008
Yar’Adua was known to have stepped hard on his predecessors toes. Upon entering office president Yar’Adua, described by his wife as a very honest man who left no wealth behind; seriously went after the reversal of Nigeria’s public assets that his predecessor had sold to his allies, Aliku Dangote and Femi Otedola.
Reuters reported on the serious transfer of Nigeria’s assets by Obasanjo to Dangote:
(Reuters) – “Nigerian tycoon Aliko Dangote has acquired a controlling stake in Nigeria’s third-largest refinery in Kaduna for an undisclosed sum, consolidating his grip on the OPEC member nation’s refining sector. It was the second major refinery purchase in a week by Dangote, who is a major financier of the ruling party and ally of outgoing President Olusegun Obasanjo, after he bought the largest refinery in Port Harcourt on May 17.”
“In the weeks leading up to Obasanjo’s departure, Dangote’s privately held company has also scooped up a cement plant, a telecoms licence and mining concessions in a rush of privatisations that has triggered accusations of cronyism by opposition parties.”
By July of 2007, barely 2 months into office, Yar’Adua had held meetings with Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE), to query the sale of Nigeria’s refineries to Obasanjo’s henchmen, Aliku Dangote and tycoon Otedola. BPE reportedly justified the sale to Bluestar, saying it was transparent, but the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) faulted it, and maintained that the corporation was capable of running them efficiently.
President Yar’Adua “after considering the facts presented to him, the President directed that the sale should be revoked as the exercise was not transparent enough. The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) praised President Yar’Adua for the revocation of the privatization of the refineries.”
President Yar’Adua, determined to recover Nigeria’s infrastructure and assets coveted by Obasanjo and his cronies, moved on to other government assets.
According to Bashani Aminu, as relayed in other cables, aka “Disentangling Obasanjo” :
“Aminu expects more of the same soon — particularly an overturn of the Transcorp purchase of the Abuja Nicon Hilton. Aminu also noted Yar’adua’s commitment to fighting corruption and told Post he gave the greenlight to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate anyone.
He predicted Yar’adua will overturn the Transcorp purchase of the Abuja Nicon Hilton soon. These deals will be aimed at removing the ill-earned gains of Obasanjo and his close allies such as Aliko Dangote. (NOTE: Dangote and Obasanjo’s Transcorp were both part of the consortium that purchased the Port Harcourt and Kaduna refineries.) Aminu claimed Dangote gave Obasanjo a 35 million USD jet plane as a recent “gift.””
Former Ambassador to the United Nations (1979-1983) Maitama Sule, a well-known confidante of President Umaru Yar’Adua according to other cables [TransparencyNg], told US officials that Obasanjo was worried Yar’Adua was going to prosecute him for corruption. AC’s Garba Shehu further relayed that Atiku has warned Yar’Adua of Obasanjo’s scheme’s to remove Yar’Adua from office due to these fears, and what Obasanjo referred to as “Yar’Adua’s “treachery.”” Cable 08ABUJA457_a
Yar’Adua also suffered from chronic allergic disorder and this was easily attributed to be the direct cause of his death, but his illness’ sudden turn for the worst few months after he started ambitiously hunting his predecessor and his suspicion that he was poisoned by the ex-president’s kitchen staff, raises obvious questions.
The possibility of the poisoning to death of a Nigerian serving head of State will amount to a grievous crime. The exhumation of late President Yar’Adua’s body may be necessitated as well as a thorough investigation of all who may have been involved in the murder of a president in office.
Late Palestinian premier, Yasser Arafat was recently exhumed due to evidence of polonium poisoning as an investigation into alleged Israeli intelligence poisoning was reopened.
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