Tuesday, May 31, 2016

"There Is Nothing Like Abacha's Loot, He Never Stole" Says Al-Mustapha

The Chief Security Officer (CSO) to the late Head of State Gen. Sani Abacha, Major Hamzat al-Mustapha yesterday said there is “nothing like Abacha loot.

He said he does not harbour grudges against his prosecutors and Sergeant Rogers, who was the prosecution witness in court, adding that he has taken solace in God’s blessings. He said he was also consoled by the fact that some members of the panel that tried him had washed their hands clean because he was being victimised.

The military officer, who was released from detention three years ago, promised to release his memoir, which he said, will give details on his involvement in the Abacha government, its economic activities, how the military leader died and his travails outside power.

Mustapha disputed the claim of an Abacha loot, urging the authorities to disclose the date of lodgment, the people behind the money and the amount. He said while Abacha left 9.732 dollars in the coffers, it was mismanaged by the administration that cried foul about an Abacha loot.

The said his next move would be determined by the outcome of the case for the determination of his military status by the court.

The former CSO spoke with reporters in Lagos on his ordeal in detention, his protracted trial alleged moves to continually tarnish Abacha’s image because he stepped on toes.

Denying the allegation of assisting the former military leader to ferry money abroad, he said: “The proper facts about the Abacha loot are not known. Where was the money from? What was it meant for? How was it taken out? Who kept the money there? Abacha was not leaving Nigeria at a later time. His journeys were within Africa because the toes he had stepped upon were bent on removing him.

“In November 1998, I told the government to prosecute me, if I have any bank account than my salary account with the Bank of the North.”

Mustapha, who said he is recuperating from the trauma of detention, torture and protracted trial, urged Nigerians to wait for his book. He lamented that an earlier book written by Gen. M.T Alli was not allowed to circulate because it exposed the atrocities of many Nigerian leaders.

He said: “I am just recuperating from what I went through. I went through punishment and torture. I was in chains. I was not allowed to see a doctor, family and lawyer. There was no light in my cell. I only wore my singlet, which was full of blood. You sighted food and you are denied. I was treated like an animal.


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