Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has revealed why military head of state, General Yakubu Gowon was sacked from office in a bloodless coup in July 1975.
The former president addressing Christian faithful at the Diocese of Lagos West, Archbishop Vining Memorial Church Cathedral in Ikeja said he also never bore any ill will to former dictator, General Sani Abacha (rtd) despite the plan of the late HOS to kill him.
“After the war, General Gowon said that military will go by 1976 but later said that it will not be realistic again and that was the major reason why he was unseated.
“That later brought about what was termed as Muritala/Obasanjo regime. But we were careless as regard security in which Muritala was killed like chicken and I would have been killed but God’s grace preserved me and I was later persuaded to take over.
“We stabilized the country, conducted election and handed over. But when there was incessant coup in different parts of the country, I spoke against Military in general and Abacha’s in particular.
“The consequence was that I was arrested, tried and sentenced to 30 years imprisonment which Abacha later reduced to 15 years but God in his mercy, I only spent 3 years, three months and three days. He pointed out that the person who sent him to prison was not alive by the time he came out.
“But when I was in prison in Jos, Abacha’s son died and I wrote a condolence letter to him and also when he died, I also wrote a letter of condolence to his wife of which the prison authority found unbelievable but delivered all my letters.