A former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo has narrated how General Olu Bajowa (Rtd) saved him within the February 1976 navy coup involving Buka Dimka, a lieutenant colonel within the Nigerian military on the time.
Following a coup led by Dimka which focused high navy officers for execution, Murtala Mohammed, a brigadier basic of the Nigerian military and head of state on the time, was assassinated on February 13, 1976.
The coup, nonetheless, failed and Obasanjo, who was Mohammed’s deputy, grew to become head of state and dominated for 3 years.
Speaking on the 80th birthday celebration of Bajowa, held in Igbotako, Okitipupa native authorities space of Ondo state, on Sunday, Obasanjo mentioned the retired military basic not directly saved him from being killed throughout the Dimka coup.
“I want to say something about Olu – either he knew it or he didn’t know. When Dimka coup came, if Olu had not been what he is, I would have gone with the coup,” he mentioned.
“Olu is very respectful. He is very conscious of our culture. He had a child, a boy, and wanted to name the child after me. He had to call me early in the morning, that morning Dimka struck.
“And because Olu said he was coming, I had to wait a little bit. I waited beyond the time I would have gone out. Olu then came. He made the request and I granted the request.
“So, I was a little bit late in going on the route that I normally took to work. And Raymond Dumeje went ahead of me and they thought it was me and they shot his car. They shot his car, Murtala was shot. Indirectly, that is how Olu Bajowa saved my life.”
Obasanjo described Bajowa as a dedicated soldier, including that he carried out well when he drafted him to steer the 11 battalion throughout the civil conflict.