Oba of Lagos, His Royal Highness Rilwan Akiolu, has opened up on the role he played in the alleged bribery of some Yoruba monarchs by late Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha, to frustrate the struggle against the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election believed to have been won by late business mogul, Chief MKO Abiola.
The monarch, who was the Lagos State Police Commissioner at the time, said that with the exception of one or two traditional rulers, other prominent Yoruba Obas collected bribe from the Abacha administration, declaring that he personally shared the money to the monarchs.
The monarch said the traditional rulers collected the bribe from Abacha to assist the late Head of State to remain in office following the relentless protests that trailed his coming to power.
He hinted that he has the names of the monarchs and the role they played, especially the Yoruba traditional rulers and vowed to expose them after the 2015 general elections.
Oba Akiolu stated this on Sunday in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State during the visit of the Emir of Kano and former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Muhammed Sanusi II to the Awujale and Paramount Ruler of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona at his palace.
He was part of Emir Sanusi’s entourage to Ijebu-Ode after the latter had visited him at his Iga Idunganran Palace in Lagos on Saturday.
Delivering his speech at the palace, Oba Akiolu disclosed that he had spoken with President Goodluck Jonathan to forgive and forget the errors that Mallam Sanusi might have committed as CBN governor, adding that all humans are prone to errors.
He said: “The Awujale is not part of them (corrupt monarchs), when the time comes, I am going to expose those monarchs who were given bribes in order to aid the late Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha to remain in power.
“I was a Commissioner of Police then in Lagos; I was at the meeting where money was being shared to the monarchs; I know those that collected money. I was given the share of Awujale to send it across to him, but I told them, right there that he will never collect the money and truly, when he was approached, he rejected it.
“There are some monarchs that I personally gave their own share and they collected it from me. I have their names and when the time comes, I will expose them. I am not afraid of anybody, they are corrupt and those are some of the bad eggs in the traditional institution. These are the people, you (Emir of Kano) should be very careful of associating with”, Oba Akiolu stated.
He advised the Emir not to look down on his subjects, as they were the main source of his traditional power.
It will be recalled that former Lagos State Governor and National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Alhaji Bola Tinubu had during the 80th birthday of the Awujale last May took a swipe at Yoruba Obas saying that most of them soiled their hands during Abacha’s regime.
Earlier in his welcome address, Oba Adetona applauded the contributions of the Emir to the economy of this country when he was the governor at the apex bank.
Among dignitaries at the palace to join the monarch to receive his guests were the former governor of the state, who is also the Aremo of Ijebuland, Chief Olusegun Osoba, Senator Adegbenga Kaka, the three state commissioners from Ijebu Ode: Otunba Bimbo Ashiru (Commerce and Industry), Adebayo Fari (Forestry) and Olugbenga Otenuga (Physical and Urban Planning).
Also present were members of the state Council of Obas and Ijebu chiefs, religious leaders, the Hausa community in Ijebuland.
Speaking on behalf of Governor Ibikunle Amosun, Bimbo Ashiru congratulated the two distinguished Nigerians, who, he described as shinning lights in the traditional institution in the country.
Amosun charged the monarchs to continue to support the government in their various domains, adding that, being the custodians of both the traditional and culture of the people, the onus lies on them to play very good advisory roles to all tiers government.
Mallam Sanusi explained that he decided to visit the two Obas in the South West because they were the only ones who identified with him during his coronation as the new Emir of Kano, adding that they were his adopted fathers.
Source: Nigerian Pilot
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