How Kola Abiola fought Kudirat over Dad’s detention

Kudirat Abiola…Very disturbed with events in her husband’s political career
The Nigerian
military government had become jittery. Kudirat was not only keeping the
struggle for democracy alive in the minds of Nigerians through the media, her
statements and actions had begun penetrating the diplomatic circles of powerful
countries like Canada and the United States. Her crusade
became focused on gathering records of human rights violations perpetrated by
the military and presenting them as accurately and diligently as she could to
diplomats of powerful countries, whom she hoped would use the data to convince
their governments to take appropriate and decisive action against the Nigerian
government.

Kola Abiola…Scion of MKO Abiola’s dynasty

By then the
military government had appointed a death squad that had begun trailing her
every move. All her actions were being reported to Nigeria’s military leader, General
Abacha
. On several occasions, her driver of more than fifteen years,
who had always been security conscious, notified her that they were being
followed. One time, out of anger, Kudirat asked him to park the car
and walked toward the vehicle that was tailing them and said, “Tell your boss that he ought to be ashamed
of himself for sending a bunch of men to tail a woman”
After that she
did not see the car for a while. But she had some other concerns. Kola,
one of her husband’s sons from another wife, wanted to change
Moshood’s
lawyer. He was under the impression that his current lawyer,
a Mr.
Ajayi
, was not doing a good job. Kudirat, on the other hand, objected
to this move and insisted that only Moshood could change his lawyer. She
stood by Mr. Ajayi because he was a very competent lawyer who believed
in Moshood
to the extent that he was willing to take up the case for free.


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MKO Abiola the Enigma

 The feud was not supposed to become a big one
but it became very big because the government had kept Moshood in solitary
confinement, preventing him from stating whom he wanted to be his lawyer.
The worst thing
that came out of this feud was that the government now had an alibi, thanks to Kola,
to use in case it decided to assassinate Kudirat.

Jamiu Abiola wants the World to read about the true story of his dad

In the meantime,
Kudirat
narrowed her targets. She had given up on the possibility of getting foreign
governments to place an embargo on Nigerian crude oil. Her hopes now rested on
smaller sanctions being placed on high-ranking government officials. One day,
speaking of this strategy, she said, “Smaller
sanctions might seem to be insufficient but they carry a lot of weight. They
include travel bans and you know how these criminals in government like
globe-trotting with Nigeria’s money to squander abroad”

General Sani Abacha…Played 419 on MKO Abiola

She also wanted
the foreign accounts of government officials frozen. “This will make them weaker and force them back to the negotiation
table because they worship money and not God”

“But she had some other concerns. Kola, one of her husband’s sons from
another wife, wanted to change Moshood’s
lawyer. He was under the impression that his current lawyer, a Mr. Ajayi, was not doing a good job. Kudirat, on the other hand, objected to
this move and insisted that only Moshood
could change his lawyer. She stood by Mr.
Ajayi
because he was a very competent lawyer who believed in Moshood to the extent that he was
willing to take up the case for free”.

MKO Abiola placating Kudirat not to worry about his fight with the establishment

She knew from
the onset that measures like travel bans and freezing of accounts could hardly
topple a dictatorship, but she was certain that they could make the government
negotiate.
So many things
bothered Kudirat about the struggle but her biggest concern was
obviously the lingering uncertainty about her husband’s life. Describing her
frustration, she once said, “I feel like
I have been blindfolded in this battle. I am risking my life, an action that
can make my children orphans, yet I don’t know whether the man I am fighting
for is still alive”

General Abacha’s 2nd in command, Genere Oladipupo Diya (His Hands were tight on MKO Abiola’s Case)

Mama
Alhaja…Alhaja Kudirat Abiola’s mother. She was disturbed and tried
advising MKO against picking a fight with government over his mandate

She voiced her
concerns openly. At times it was as if she was speaking to herself. Carrying
the burden of such a heavy struggle was tough for a woman who had never had any
experience in politics and activism until these last three years. But as her
struggle continued, she was lucky to find a listening ear in Walter
Carrington
, the US
ambassador to Nigeria at that time-a man whom she described as the best and
kindest diplomat she had ever met.

MKO & Kudirat Abiola; First Nigerian Couple to die for Democracy

Walter
Carrington was born in 1930. Before joining the American diplomatic corps, he
had served in the US Army. This Harvard-trained diplomat had always
been keenly interested in human rights issues. This was evident when he became
the youngest person to be the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Commission against
Discrimination.
Since Walter
Carrington was appointed as the US Ambassador to Nigeria in 1993, the year of Moshood’s
presidential elections, he had a clear understanding of what had transpired.
But that was not only what had made it easy for Kudirat to work with him,
it was his determination to exhibit the highest standard of objectivity and
open-mindedness with all sides in the Nigerian political conflict. Unlike many
other diplomats, he believed that the job of a diplomat was to build
relationships with the government of his host country as well as with members
of any credible form of opposition, as long as its members were not involved in
terrorist acts or any other actions that threatened law and order. He was thus
very receptive of Kudirat and was attentive to her concerns. This angered the
Nigerian government.

MKO Abiola…The Star Boy from Egba Land

As a sign of his
willingness to give his government a clear picture of the situation in Nigeria,
Walter
Carrington
facilitated a meeting between Kudirat and John
Shattuck
, who was the official responsible for human rights issues at
the United States State Department
at that time. Kudirat was given enough time to present a thorough report of
the government’s atrocities against her husband and its human rights
violations.

The Author Jamiu Abiola tells the GDA more story of how his father fell for Abacha’s dirty deal

Although she was
pleased by Shattuck’s concern about the matters that she had raised,
Kudirat
still went to the home of the US Ambassador the following day to mount more pressure on John
Shattuck
on the need for the American government to stand by Nigerians against military
tyranny. It had to place sanctions on the Nigerian government. Once again she
was optimistic after the reception that she had received. Never had she been so
excited in a long time. She quickly headed home and did not even bother to look
behind to see if the government’s squad was tailing her.

Dignatories @ the Launching of ‘The President who Never Ruled’

(Excerpts from
the book, The President Who Never Ruled by Jamiu Abiola; get copies
in any book shop across the world or write Jamiu Abiola through
[email protected]. Read Mysterious things Kudirat Abiola did on the
day she was shot
in
our next post on this blog)

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