Breaking News One Of The Forces That Crushed Matawalle
There are Generals, but Aliyu Mohammed stands out in the league of military personnel who rose to the zenith of their careers. Born in Gusau,…
There are Generals, but Aliyu Mohammed stands out in the league of military personnel who rose to the zenith of their careers. Born in Gusau, Zamfara State capital, on May 18, 1943, the army added his birthplace to his name to distinguish him from another General, Aliyu Mohammed, and the element of distinction has followed Gusau all his life.
Just as he dominated the military during his heyday, so does his influence loom large in politics. In doubt of his political exploits? Ask Bello Muhammad Matawalle who has just been shown the exit door of the Zamfara Government House.
No Nigerian, dead or alive, has served as National Security Adviser to different presidents, but Gusau retained that office under three different administrations. He headed different intelligence agencies, he was Director-General of the National Security Organisation (NSO), which he split into three – the Department of State Services (DSS), the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA).
The veteran spy Chief was commander of the Nigerian Defence Academy from February 1992 to January 1993. He became National Security Adviser in January 1993, and was promoted to Chief of Army Staff when former military President Ibrahim Babangida (IBB) passed control to the short-lived civilian government of the Third Republic in August 1993. He was the Chief of Army Staff during Ernest Shonekan and briefly under Sani Abacha’s regime.
He was the National Security Adviser when the government of former President Olusegun Obasanjo retired former political office holders in the armed forces. That action is believed to have laid the foundation for Nigeria’s longest transition of power from a civilian-to-civilian government. He later left the government, but got back into that same office under ex-President Goodluck Jonathan in 2010.
According to records, Gusau participated in several military coups. He reportedly played a major role in the coup that ousted President Shehu Shagari and brought the then General Muhammadu Buhari to power.
But two years down the line, he partook in another coup that ended Buhari’s regime and brought IBB into power.
In a chat with The Interview magazine, Buhari challenged Babangida and Gusau to tell the truth on why they carried out the coup against him. Buhari, who was detained in Benin prison for four years after the coup, said he fell out with Gusau and IBB because of his tough stance against corruption.
I learnt that Aliyu Gusau, who was in charge of intelligence, took import licence from the ministry of commerce, which was in charge of supplies and gave it to Alhaji Mai Deribe,” he had said.
“It was worth N100,000, a lot of money at that time. I confronted them and took the case to the Army council in a memo…I wanted Gusau punished.”