Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has debunked claims by the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona, in the extracts of his autobiography, about him as “a tissue of lies and untruths.”
In his autobiography titled “Awujale: The Autobiography of Alaiyeluwa Oba S. K. Adetona, Ogbagba II,” the monarch insinuated that Mr. Obasanjo had a hand in the case brought against Globacom Chairman, Mike Adenuga, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
The monarch had also claimed that Obasanjo’s rift with his former deputy, Abubakar Atiku, was the reason why Adenuga was being pursued by the EFCC at the time.
The EFCC allegations against Mr. Adenuga, the monarch further alleged, were based on its claims that Atiku, whom the anti-graft agency said was a major shareholder in Globacom, allegedly gave Adenuga money from the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, PTDF, which was invested in Adenuga’s bank, Equatorial Trust Bank, and that the funds were subsequently used in paying for the Globacom licence.
Responding in a stinging letter, dated December 30, 2016, the former president said he was replying to the extract contained in pages 187 – 195 of the book, which was published by Mosuro Publishers in 2010.
“Your assertion in the publication was a tissue of lies and untruths. Olopade is one of my best friends and yes, I would be at his birthday celebration but I would not have invited Mike, your cousin, to meet me anywhere other than my office or official residence as President of Nigeria. Kabiyesi, do you think I would set the press up to capture me and Mike in a photograph for the newspapers? That would be puerile of me as President. Of course, I could not say that Mike could not do that. That you think that I, as President of Nigeria, would descend to such depravity makes me think of you much less than I thought of you, until now.
“If ten per cent of the rumours ascribing businesses and properties I know nothing about were true, I would be the richest man on earth,” he said in the letter.
“The invitation to Mike (Adenuga) to contribute to the building of the Library block of Bells University was issued to him by the then Vice-Chancellor, Professor Julius Okogie, who never told me about inviting Mike to contribute until Mike pulled out. And that I have not and I will not talk to Mike about it should convince you that I know nothing about its genesis.” Mr. Obasanjo said.
He further said against what the book claims, he did not interfere in the work of the EFCC.
“On several occasions, Nuhu Ribadu (EFCC former chairman) has asserted that, under my watch, he was a free agent to do his work as he deemed fit. Where it was necessary, he reported the outcome of his work to me and the subsequent or follow-up actions he intended to take. On no occasion did I guide, lead or direct him on what to do.”