PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari said he knew that former ex-military President Ibrahim Babangida was going to throw him but did not want to foil the coup so as not shed blood of senior military officers that plotted the coup by foiling it and possibly executing him and other senior military officers.
This was contained in a book authored by Prof. John Paden titled '' Muhammadu Buhari: The Challenges of Leadership in Nigeria, which was presented on Monday at the International Conference Centre, Abuja, Nigeria's capital.
In the book which spoke extensively about the counter-coup of August 27, 1985, that led to the emergence of IBB, the author wrote that Buhari got wind of the coup but chose not to foil it because he did not want to shed blood.
The book reads: “The question has arisen subsequently as to whether Buhari knew about the countercoup in advance.
“Given his ‘appreciation’ of complex situations, it is argued by some, how could he not have known? Some of those closest to Buhari at the time have subsequently argued that he did know a countercoup was coming. They insist that Buhari calculated that to preempt this plan would have meant executing six or eight senior officers. This he was unwilling to do.”
Further, in the book the author explained that Buhari soon after his ouster in August 1985 was detained in Akure and Benin respectively before he was released in December in 1988.
“Babangida also tried to look for ways to indict Buhari personally, but his integrity and grassroots popularity helped protect him.
“After the Babangida countercoup, three of the ministers were retained. Babangida also set up the Aboyade probe into the finances of Buhari and some key ministers but the investigators could find no evidence of any personal aggrandisement on his part during his term as Head of State.
“Significantly, the three ministers retained from the previous administration by Babangida-Lukman, Bali and David-West— strongly defended the integrity of Buhari and his close associates, and no charges were ever brought against Buhari.
“Meanwhile, Buhari had been taken from Lagos by plane to Akure in Ondo State. After a few months in Akure, he was taken to Benin City in the south of the country, where he would stay under house arrest until his release in December 1988.”
President Buhari Opens Up On Babangida's 1985 Coup Against Him... Why He Didn't Execute IBB
Reviewed by Queen- Doosh