by Ajiboye Babatunde
Late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola was a suave and adept Nigerian businessman and politician who was believed to have won the Presidential elections conducted on June 12, 1993. The election was annulled by the government of General Ibrahim Babangida and he hurriedly established the Interim National Government headed by Chief Ernest Shonekan, an amalgam which was described as illegal by the recently demised Justice Dolapo Akinsanya of the Lagos High Court. General Sani Abacha staged a palace coup and wrested power for Shonekan to now unleash a dictatorship never seen before in the annals of Nigerian history. It did not take long before the dictator, Abacha, would clamp Abiola in a lengthy detention where he was eventually murdered, yes you heard me right, he was murdered in a well articulated plan involving the military junta and American CIA.
Consequent upon the death of the dictator, Sani Abacha, on the night of June 8, 1998, in the midst of Indian prostitutes, it was decided by the military top brass that Abiola too must be killed because IBB had earlier declared that an Abiola presidency was a no-no for the military brass hat. Abiola had been detained at a safe house in Abuja and kept under the watch of Superintendent of Police, Theodore Zadok, who in turn reports to Major Hamza Al Mustapha, the Chief Security Officer to the late Abacha. Zadok in his testimony at the Oputa panel had said, “I was the head of the detention base of late Chief Abiola with thirteen other bodyguards and a driver. I was responsible for collecting N800,000 from the CSO to the Commander in Chief through the Commissioner of Police, Federal Capital Territory Command, for the feeding of Abiola. I was also responsible for taking care of his health. Abiola would never eat any food until i had tasted it in his presence. Even when I want to give him bottle water, I had to drink from the same cup before giving him to drink”.
On the day Abacha died, Al Mustapha had ordered that Abiola be moved to Gado Nasko barracks. Zadok had told the late Justice Chukwudifu Oputa led panel that Brig Gen Ibrahim Sabo, former Director, Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI), told him (which i find very difficult to believe because of the disparity in rank and Corp) that Gen Ishaya Bamaiyi, then Chief of Army Staff told him (Sabo) that since Abacha was dead, Abiola too should be killed in the same manner. Gen Sabo in his testimony at the panel said Bamaiyi had begun moves to get Abiola killed saying “he called me and told me”.
Now the international dimension of the plot, Thomas Pickering as US Ambassador to Nigeria (1981-83) had forged a cordial relationship with the late Chief as they were both involved in a Soviet inspired disinformation to use subversion to influence Nigerian domestic politics, so it was assumed by military conspirators that Abiola will FEEL SAFE in the company of Pickering. On 7th of July, which was the day Abiola was meant to be released from detention a radio message was sent to Zadok to prepare Chief Abiola for a meeting at the Akionla Aguda House at 1.30pm. Zadok brought a three piece native attire for Abiola to wear and he drove him to the meeting with security details in tow. It was a meeting with Assistant Secretary of state, Susan Elizabeth Rice, Undersecretary Thomas Pickering and the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Bill Twaddell and the subject of discussion was meant to be Nigeria’s transition plan.
On arrival at the meeting Chief Abiola greeted the American delegates and even engaged Pickering in a discussion having known him over the years. Sitting down on a square sofa, Susan Rice served the chief tea and almost immediately the chief was feeling uneasy while requesting to visit the restroom. Rice, in her memoirs, ‘THOUGH LOVE: My Story of Things worth fighting for’, she described Abiola’s last hour in such a riveting narrative and she said in opening sentence, “to this day many people in Nigeria think I killed Abiola”. I consider this to be a poignant self indictment as she is a senior operative of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Abiola came back from the restroom bare-chested and was on the floor writhing in pain before the foreigners called in his minders and a car was dispatched to bring in Dr Sadiq Ali Wali, the Chief Physician at Aso Clinic. The foreigners followed them in another car to the clinic, and in an interview in April 2003, Pickering said “I know right away that if this man died in our presence or was going to die in our presence, we had to absolutely know the whole story”. He said further, “The wife and daughter were very vehement, once they heard that we were involved, that WE WERE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DEATH”. The Americans virtually took over after Abiola death has been confirmed, Pickering said “They did what we suggested, THEY DIDN’T SEEM TO HAVE A VERY STRONG FEEL FOR HOW TO DEAL WITH THIS. So we gave them our best advice, MOST OF WHICH THEY FOLLOWED PRETTY WELL”. The following ensued between Femi Falana (lawyer to Abiola family) and Zadok at the Oputa panel:
Falana: To your knowledge as a senior security officer, do you know of any situation in Nigeria, where a foreigner had given tea, food or water to any detainee?
Zadok: No my Lord. To the best of my knowledge, anytime I take Abiola to Aguda House for an appointment it is the duty of personnel to prepare him tea and it was MY DUTY TO TASTE IT BEFORE GIVING IT TO CHIEF”.
But on the day Abiola died, Zadok was summoned on radio to go and see the Chief of General Staff, Admiral Akhigbe, leaving Abiola in the unsafe hands of Major Aliyu. At the Oputa panel was asked by Falana:
Falana: Would you agree with me that you were tricked to the office of CGS so that you will not be around when the situation would occur, from the benefit of hindsight now?
Zadok: It may be so but I had that confidence that I was leaving him with somebody who is more senior than me.
Falana: You mean Major Aliyu?
Zadok: Yes my Lord.
In his testimony at the panel, Zadok had also alluded to a situation where he approached Aliyu for the third quarter allocation of N800,000, which the CSO refuse to provide. An Abiola presidency obviously is not acceptable to the occultic (yes, because they are indeed a cult and operate in a cult-like manner) military top brass and as Gen Ishaya Bamaiyi stated in his book, ‘Vindication of a General’ where he attributed Abiola’s death to a sort of INEXPLICABLE CONSPIRACY (emphasis mine) of the military government that succeeded the Abacha regime. He said inter alia that “I believe only Gen Abubakar Abdulsalam and those he used to handle Abiola’s death can tell Nigerians how Chief M.K.O.Abiola died.
The curiosity of the visiting American government agents was also suspect as they were also the ones who broke the news to Abiola’s family members. Susan Rice’s narrative was suspect, obviously to exculpate herself and her country. She confirmed pouring the tea that killed the late Chief and also breaking the news of the death to Abiola’s wives as she said “the ladies wailing was so intense, IT HAUNTS ME TO THIS DAY”. She said in her book “Washington would hyperventilate since it is not every day a major figure drop dead in the midst of senior US officials. She had also described how she heard Rev Jesse Jackson speak on CNN how Abiola died suspiciously in the presence of US officials. Rice said “I couldn’t believe my ears-our own guy implying we were killers! Immediately, I placed a call to his long time aide, Yuri, asking them to shut the Rev down, PLEASE GET HIM OFF THE SET”.
In his book, ‘Clapping with one hand: June 12 and the crisis of a nation’, Olawale Oshun, National Democratic Coalition (NADECO, the apex coalition against the military dictatorship) Secretary and third Republic Chief Whip of the House of Representatives said “it was on June 28, 1998 exactly that that information reached some key elements within the the democratic movement that Abiola would be murdered soon and in any case not later than September 1998.
The information came via a document from a source we knew, respected and trusted”. Now imagine that Rice confirmed in her memoirs that she was the person who contacted all the international pathologist who conducted autopsy on the late chief and he was said to have died of heart attack or myocardial infarction. Myocardial infarction and arrhythmias is usually as a result of drug abuse as lungs generally appear to show evidence of generalized edema.
The truth is not all poison can be detected by the most sophisticated coroner’s laboratory as only a few hundreds out of eight million chemical compounds on earth will a pathologist discover. A famous case was that of Timothy Waters death in 1985 which medical examiners missed the real cause of his death which was poison.
There is no gain-saying the fact that late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola was killed by the occultic and evil military regime of Gen Abdulsam in a high-wired connivance with the Central Intelligence Agency.
Excerpts from an incoming book of the same title.