Peter Obi(3): “I was impeached for cutting waste …”

October 6, 2016


This brief intro is not about what the place of retired General Obasanjo (rGO) as president in Nigeria’s history will be although the verdict of history on him cannot be kind but a little aside of how he led a government that encouraged so much disregard for orderliness, nay, the country’s constitution, that impeachment became a weapon in his hands is needed.

From cross-dressing, bail-jumping (in London) corrupt Bayelsa’s Alamisiegha to Ladoja, Nigeria knew no peace from the unleashing of an imperial presidency through this particular aberration. Ladoja’s offence? He had more than a little problem with Adedibu who wanted to split – yeah, incredible – the monthly SCANDALOUS allocations of billions/yearly to each governor. rGO was reported as advising Ladoja to share the hundreds of millions monthly allocations that need no accounting – and up till now, governors still receive (why are we poor???),  between himself and Adedibu!

Ladoja not heeding the advice – after all, he was the governor and like thirty-five other governors who receive N500m – N700m monthly according to reports – became a marked man. How much are we talking about in this rape of the Nigerian people by this special group – presidents also belong in the security vote as pocket-money top tier of Nigeria, Inc?

“From what we have, immediately money arrived from Abuja the governor would immediately call those in charge and demands and gets his N500 million before other issues are attended to. That is a firsthand charge. Can you imagine this kind of impunity in this age? Our governor does not joke with his security votes and so are his counterparts across the country,” he said with a deep sigh. – Niyi Owolade, a former deputy speaker of the Osun House of Assembly, who is also a former attorney general of the state.

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It was like that with variations on the theme of what led to The Impeachment Industry that enriched “lawmakers” at state level, law adjudicates and left Nigeria materially and politically poorer. It was the route that saw Dr. Jonathan to the presidency after becoming governor, succeeding Alamsiegha, and after being hand-picked by dictatorial rGO as vice-presidential candidate to Yar Adua, a sick man as his own “worthy successor” (rGO’s words) after the collapse of his mad 3rd term razzmatazz failed.

rGO stalked the land like a man possessed. There were more: Ekiti’s Fayose and the mobile poultry farming in the state that the governor said his “father”, the prez, knew about is too sick – if hillarious and corruption-laden – to narrate here.

Plateau was also on  his radar, especially by Dariye’s second term when the governor’s deputy, Mantu – rGO man or “boy” as some grown men styled themselves back then – had problems with his principal. Despite attempts to mediate in the matter and settle whatever problems by a state old hand, former Governor Solomon Lar’s attempt failed to calm rGO down. Dariye had to go.

It was well-known how his EFCC and the police ensured that “order” was restored: detention of all assembly members for a while, and six “lawmakers” were then taken to Abuja under heavy security – Jos has always been the state capital – ensured the six were protected to do the job at [rGO’s] hand, and Dariye lost his job.

The judiciary? Now, this arm of government has never been respected in Nigeria but in the Ekiti saga, then Chief Justice Belgore’s views against Ekiti’s Chief Judge Aladejana is on record. It would be another CJ that would save Peter Obi whose impeachment, though not due to rGO’s meddling as far as I can recall, was initially deprived of his mandate by the president’s massive rigging machine which saw now “progressive” Dr. Chris Ngige of APC become governor. He would rule Anambra for about three years before Obi won his mandate back through his dogged fight through the law courts.

Above short background is necessary for non-Nigerian readers to understanding that Peter Obi’s impeachment by Anambra’s “lawmakers” was not new. I cannot remember that rGO had hands in an unconstitutional act that Obi should have seen coming in the political corrupt arena that Nigeria had become but state “lawmakers” had followed in the tragic footsteps he planted when impeachment was ruthlessly used to fight his “enemies” among whom was Asiwaju Tinubu. He could not be touched because his state legislature was impenetrable but perhaps more important was Tinubu’s own political acumen.

Now, we hear Peter Obi’s take on how he was impeached and how he got back his job a second time. Talk about a [political] cat with nine lives!




  1.  of 7:  #Peter ObiAndTheChangeNigeriaNeeds

     2 of 7: How I defeated “ministry people …”

And this, from 2007, one of my essays for a Nigerian newspaper; it was posted here in 2012:

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2016: 7:03 a.m. [GMT]



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