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Gowon alleged looting: U.K dissociates self, as IPAN petitioned

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Gowon alleged looting: U.K dissociates self, as IPAN petitioned

United Kingdom has dissociated itself from the fraud allegation leveled against the former Nigeria Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, by the member of the United Kingdom Parliament, Tom Tugendhat.

This dissociation came immediately after a petition written by an International Organization, Igbos for a Progressive Nigeria, IPAN, to the British Parliament, demanding for a detailed information about the alleged financial fraud.

Recall that Tom Tugendhat MP, during the Westminster Hall

debate on 23 November, 2020, accused the former Nigeria Head of State, Gowon of looting half of Central Bank of Nigeria.

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During the debate, Tom Tugendhat in his words said “Some people will remember when General Gowon left Nigeria with half of the Central Bank, so it is said, and moved to London.”

Replying to the petition in a letter dated 21 December, 2020, and signed by a member of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, FCDO Nigeria Unit, one Angela disclosed that Tom Tugendhat made the statement on his own personal capacity, and not for the British Parliament or United Kingdom.

According to Angela, “Thank you for your email of 29 November to the Foreign Commonwealth and

Development Office (FCDO) about the debate on Nigeria.

“I am replying as a member

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of the FCDO Nigeria Unit. I recognise there is concern about the comments made by Tom Tugendhat MP about former Nigerian Head of State, General Gowon, during the Westminster Hall debate on 23 November.

“I would like to clarify that Mr Tugendhat was speaking in a

personal capacity and not on behalf of the UK Government.

“The High Commissioner has written to the Nigerian Foreign Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama, as well as to General Gowon, to reiterate this point. Yours Sincerely, Angela.”

In their petition, the National President IPAN, Comrade Lawrence Onuzulike demanded for substantive proof of the allegations against the former Head of State, whence they would sue for character defamation.

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In this letter, titled ‘complain about Tom Tugendhat to the British Parliament, dated 29th November, 2020, Onuzulike in his words ” I am writing on behalf of millions of patriotic Nigerians to voice our concerns on a pronouncement made by the British parliament.

“We are made to believe, from information on your website, that we should get a response to this letter within 20 days, beginning from today.

“Recently, at the UK parliament committee debate on a petition on the Nigeria’s #EndSARS crisis, Tom Tugendhat, a member of the United Kingdom parliament, had accused Yakubu Gowon – a former Nigerian military head of state who ruled Nigeria from 1966 to 1975 – of looting half of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

“Back home, millions of Nigerians are taking this allegation very seriously, and for that, we’re calling for proofs. We, Nigerians are seeking proofs of the allegation that Mr Gowon looted half of the Nigeria’s central bank, because we want to hold him accountable.

“In a case where there’s no proof, then we ask that Mr Tom Tugendhat immediately offer unreserved apology to both Nigeria and Nigerians.

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“We Nigerians have passed through a lot in the past few months and the least we need at the moment are inciting statements and words that cause division.

“I hope to get a response soon which I’ll diligently pass back to Nigerians who knew of this my letter of complaint to the British Parliament. Sincerely Yours, Lawrence Onuzulike.”

Sir John C. Ndu (KSM) is a graduate of Political Science, from the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka. He's a media consultant and chief editor at Onitsha GRA. Send stories to johnnyfansy@gmail.com

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. McIntosh Chimeziri

    December 24, 2020 at 10:55 pm

    This is commendable!
    More and more sensitive and sensible Nigerians are beginning to show interest in the Nigeria polity.

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