Ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo Boasts – I Created 25 Nigerian Billionaires During My Tenure
The Former President, on Saturday, boasted that he had created 25 billionaires during his tenure as President from 1999- 2007.
Obasanjo also boasted that he made Africa’s richest woman, Mrs. Forunsho Alakija a billionaire among the 25.
The former President was reacting to Alakija’s claim that his administration frustrated her business when she ventured into the oil sector.
Alakija had accused Obasanjo at the same forum of illegally taking over an oil block allocated to her company.
This was after her family had invested its entire savings to strike oil in commercial quantity.
Mrs. Alakija had said:
“This oil block is in 5000 feet depth of water and was extremely difficult to explore.
“It took 15 years from the time that we were awarded the license in 1993 till 2008 when we struck the first oil
“When this event happened, 60% out of our 60% equity in the business, was forcefully taken from us by the government of the day without due process.
“We had to fight back by going to court to seek redress and it took another 12 years for justice to be served in our favour.
“In all those years it was my trust in God, my perseverance and the support of my family that got me going.”
Responding to Mrs. Alakija’s allegations, Obasanjo while delivering his own speech explained that his government had acted in line with the Mining Act back then.
Obasanjo Boasts: I Made You (Alakija) A Billionaire
According to him, the Mining Act regulates oil prospection and exploration.
The former President:
“There is a saying in my part of the world that when a proverb touches you and you failed to reply, then you are a coward.
“For you to come here and say that, for no cause whatsoever, you were denied what was rightfully yours, is not fair.
“I do not know you from Adam and there is no reason I would have denied you what rightfully belonged to you.
“So, you have struggled, and you have struck oil. God bless your heart.
Obasanjo then threw a major shade at Mrs. Alakija claiming that he made her a billionaire alongside 24 other Nigerians.
He said his target was to make 50 Nigerians billionaires, but failed to achieve it.
Obasanjo Boasts – I Made 25 Nigerians Billionaires
“My delight is to be able to create Nigerian billionaire and I always say it that my aim, when I was in government was to create 50 Nigerian billionaires.
“Unfortunately I failed. I created only 25 and Madam, you are one of them.”
Chief Obasanjo had earlier on during the event placed an order for Made In Aba shoes from the Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu.
Obasanjo commended Mr. Tony Elumelu, Chairman Tony Elumelu Foundation, for building young entrepreneurs in Africa.
He called on the federal government to create a conducive environment for people to move businesses into the country.