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How Abacha Raised Nigeria’s Foreign Reserve, Survived 8 Coup – Al-Mustapha

Abacha

Major Hamza Al-Mustapha, a former Chief Security Officer to late Gen. Sani Abacha, has revealed that eight coups were staged to topple the former military dictator.

Speaking in an interview on the Hausa Service of the BBC on Thursday, Al-Mustapha said Nigerians only knew of three coups attempt against Abacha, who died on June 8, 1998, aged 54.

The former CSO also berated elite Nigerians who allegedly stole billions of naira after Abacha’s demise.

Al-Mustapha said, “I am surprised by the way Abacha is being blackmailed. I am surprised because when he assumed leadership, Nigeria had less than $2bn in the foreign reserve.

“But within four years and eight months, he raised it to over $9bn. After his death, all the billions vanished in nine months.

“The person that raised Nigeria’s image and enhanced security is now the subject of insult. But those who shared the money he left are still alive and untouchable.”

Abacha’s Loot

He revealed that billions stashed in foreign banks during the Abacha regime were done after consultations with stakeholders, including monarchs from all over Nigeria.

“I have said it that there was a period Nigeria was to be sanctioned. So there were plans to keep money overseas so that Nigeria and Nigerians would not suffer when the sanction was imposed on the country,” Al-Mustapha said.

“We gathered emirs and chiefs from the South and from the North, together with VIPs of that time; those in government and those not in government. We met at a place called Camp Bassey Officers’ Mess in the Brigade of Guards. It was there we deliberated on the threat to sanction Nigeria. Many decisions were made.”

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