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Some politicians asked Dambazau to seize power after Yar’Adua died –Retired army spokesman

  Sani Kukasheka Usman, former army spokesperson, says Abdulrahman Dambazau (pictured), former chief of army staff, was “lobbied” to seize p...


Sani Kukasheka Usman, former army spokesperson, says Abdulrahman Dambazau (pictured), former chief of army staff, was “lobbied” to seize power after the death of former President Musa Yar’Adua.


Yar’Adua was president from 2007 until his passing in May 2010.


Usman spoke on Tuesday at the 2022 Blueprint Newspapers annual public lectures and impact series award in Abuja.


According to the former army spokesman, Dambazau rejected the temptation because he prioritised the interest of the nation.


Usman said he asked Dambazau to include the names of the people who told him to seize power in the memoir he is writing.


“One thing Nigerians do not know is that if we are counting champions of democracy in this country, there is no way you will not mention Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau. I will tell you why,” he said.


“Way back in the days when President Umar Yar’Adua was sick, he was the chief of army staff and I had the privilege of being public relations officer in the office of the army chief. I had the privilege of moving with him; we always moved together and I knew.


 “Even though he is a prolific writer, he is yet to come out with his memoir and part of that memoir should be an exposé of those people that undermined democracy in this country.


“I am saying this with every sense of responsibility because at that time the same group of politicians were the ones lobbying him to take over government unconstitutionally. We have the records and when he started writing the memoir, with due respect to him, I told him that he had to mention the names of the individuals so that posterity will remember them for who they are.


“Up till now we are still contending with that issue and I know that the international community showed concern to the extent that they had to meet with him where he promised that he will not take over the government.


“We still live with the flak where in some parts of the country they call us women because an opportunity came and we did not take advantage of it to take over the government. Now, what am I driving at? All these issues that we are talking about lack focus on critical issues. They are threatening the very corporate existence of this nation.


“When we visited 44 Reference Hospital, Kaduna, people were asking when is the announcement going to be made about taking over the government. I’m so happy General Akinyemi, the GOC 3rd armoured division (Jos) is still alive. You can ask him.


“A simple phone call to him to roll out the tanks and General Dambazau would have been head of state, but he resisted that temptation simply because he had the interest of this nation at heart and he knows that democracy is the best form of government for this country.”


Dambazau was removed as chief of army staff and retired as a lieutenant-general in 2010 by Jonathan. He was later appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari as minister of interior in 2015.


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