Chairman of the Northern Elders Forum, NEF, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, has denied being involved in the reported plot to remove President Muhammadu Buhari from office and install Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as President.
Reports emerged that while President Buhari was away in London on sick leave, some Northern politicians had started jostling for the position of the Vice President.
A group known as the Kaduna Mafia was said to have concluded plans to remove Buhari and make Osinbajo President while Abdullahi was one of those said to be interested in the position.
But reacting in an interview with Vanguard, Abdullahi said, “The Kaduna Mafia has always been the imagination of the people in a way.
“Recently, my name appeared as a member of the Kaduna Mafia who wanted to do something that I was not even aware of.
“The story was that I was one of the northern elite, who discussed how the President should be removed from office and his vice (Osinbajo) installed as President after naming a particular northerner as a vice for Osinbajo, something that I was not a party to or was not even aware of.
“The rumour then was that all other members of the group had agreed to the proposal to remove Buhari and install Osinbajo with a northern vice president except me.
“But the President must have been made to know who these people are but certainly I was not part of the group and I don’t know who they are and what they were planning to do when the President first took ill and was out of the country for a long time.
“In fact, Buhari himself talked about the incident the other day, saying that some people wished him dead and had already started lobbying for the post of vice president.
“Again, Osinbajo confirmed it but stopped at mentioning the name of those involved.
“The way my name came into the story is that they approached Osinbajo and asked whether he would agree to persuade Buhari to resign on account of ill health and for him to take over from Buhari if we in the North would nominate a vice for him.
“Of course, Osinbajo said ‘No, not at all.’ So, in the speculation they did there, they also said that when they brought the idea to me, I was the only one in the clique. They said that my name was number 7 in the group.
“This was all speculation of what ‘the Kaduna Mafia did’ and my name was bandied about as a member of the group.”