Former Minister of Aviation, Senator Stella Oduah has made a shocking revelation: “When the scandal broke over the $1.6 million BMW armoured cars bought for me by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in 2013, Jonathan invited me to explain myself.”
“At the meeting were Alison-Madueke, President Goodluck Jonathan, and Anyim Pius Anyim, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation. The president seemed satisfied with my explanation that there was nothing untoward in the deal.”
“Alison-Madueke also appeared sympathetic and even promised to speak to her friends in the national assembly and the media “to back down” on the issue. I thought she had my back. I did not know at the time that she was actually fuelling it and orchestrating all the media attacks.”
“I knew all along that Diezani could not deal with having another female around who had the kind of access I had to the president. But she went too far. She thought I was the one who leaked the issue of private Jet that put her into trouble with the House of Representatives (Diezani was accused of spending N10 billion on chartered jets). For her it was payback time.”
“Twice, I offered to resign before my sack but Jonathan asked me not to yet the issue did not go away. Diezani was paying people to keep the story alive. At the same time, she was whispering in [the president’s] ears that he had to take action.”
“Alison-Madueke asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arrest me but the plan was countered by other members of the cabinet. A presidential committee headed by Sambo Dasuki, then national security adviser, eventually indicted me. When the president told me that I had to go, I asked: “Did Diezani ask you to sack me?” President Jonathan answered no.”
Stella Oduah’s claim is contained in a book, ‘On a Platter of Gold: How Jonathan Won and Lost Nigeria’, authored by Bolaji Abdullahi, a former minister of sport and youth development in the Jonathan Presidency. The book will go on sale after its public presentation on November 30.