Why There Was No Coup In Nigeria – Obasanjo
Ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo has said that he retired 93 military officers in one day to prevent coup in Nigeria.
He said that when he became the civilian president in 1999, he only gave the military officers that were capable of staging coup d’état six hours to quit Nigerian Army.
That singular decision made the forth republic to survive and made the military a professional institution.
According to Obasanjo in a book he co-authored with three other people, including a retired general entitled: Making Africa Work, noted that the affected officers were those that had either benefited from coup or taken part in a coup.
His words: “A coup is a treason punishable by death only if it fails, and yet it puts the plotter in the State House if it succeeds.”
He explained that coup d’etat is wasteful and a situation where a junior officer takes over the government through gun and subjects his superior officer to do his will.
“He automatically becomes the most superior arm officer to all political and military officers,” he said.
Such was the situation existing in Nigeria between 1966 and 1999. “On assuming office as President, I decided to put an end to these incessant coups,” Obasanjo said.
Obasanjo stated that the idea was not to punish them but to remove them from where they could wield power to plot another coup.
“Some of them later joined politics and became governors, ministers and lawmakers but I retired them within six hours,” he said.