June 12: MKO Abiola’s Family Disowns Statement Hailing IBB As Pillar Of Support

MKO-ABIOLAThe recent statement credited to Alhaji Mubasiru Abiola that former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida has been a pillar of support to the family since the demise of the widely acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, Chief M.K.O. Abiola, has been rubbished by his younger brothers.

The larger Abiola family met yesterday on the issue with Alhaji Muritala Abiola and Engineer Sule Abiola, declaring that Mubasiru spoke for himself.

The statement by Mubashiru had rattled not a few feathers on a day dedicated to remembering the memories of the late politician and even moreso that the former military President whom the self-appointed spokesman for the Abiola family so highly praised, was responsible for the annulment of the election widely regarded as the fairest and freest in the nation’s history.

But speaking yesterday after a family meeting, Alhaji Muritala Abiola and Engineer Sule Abiola, secretary of the family said “there is no truth in Mubasiru’s statement.”

Muritala, who is also the Baale of Agbado said: “Mubasiru has been claiming to be the head of the MKO Abiola family. I do not know how that is. But I know that he is not the head of the (Salaudeen) Abiola family which is the parent body of the MKO Abiola family. And I do not know where his claim of even being the head of the MKO Abiola family comes from.

“All of us are learned. MKO was an accountant; I am an accountant, my younger brother is an engineer and our sister is a banker. Taju Abiola is an engineer too, and one of us holds a doctorate degree in Business Administration and works in a bank.

“There never was a time that we appointed Mubasiru as the head of the entire Salaudeen Abiola family or the MKO Abiola family. So he is just making a jest of himself declaring and claiming to be the head of the family. Abiola family is not about me or anybody or any individual. It is a general body, not one person.

“How could he declare IBB as the pillar of the family? I don’t know where that statement originated from. May be IBB is his own pillar.

“I don’t know what Mubasiru means by that statement; may be IBB has a room at MKO Abiola’s house in Ikeja, Lagos, since Mubasiru has declared him the head and pillar of MKO Abiola family. I don’t know. But Mubasiru must have his own reasons for saying such. The family hereby disassociates itself from his June 12 20th anniversary celebration statement. I, therefore, say openly that Mubasiru is doing what he is doing for himself, not for the family.

“What I know is that the Abiola family has never received any money from Mubasiru collected from any source on behalf of the family. Mubasiru has never declared any money to the Abiola family. We also heard that when President Obasanjo was in government, he gave money to the family. People said the money was over a million naira or so, but it was all hearsay.

“When Kudi Abiola died, I was particular about IBB not coming for the burial. I made noise over the matter that I did not want to see him there, that I might even kill him if he came. I was very angry and I meant it. It was while I was attending to Bamaiyi that IBB sneaked in and sneaked out. I rushed down when I was told, but he had sneaked out. He did not stay for long at all.

“During the government of Segun Osoba, the Abiola family was given money during June 12 celebration. For this, we decided to go and pay him a courtesy visit to show appreciation. It was there that Mubasiru jumped up to speak for the family. Since then, he started parading himself publicly as the head of the Abiola family.”

Speaking in the same vein, Sule said: “Mubasiru is not the head of the family, and has never been the official head. Two heads cannot run a ship.”