Recall that on Monday, November 23, the UK parliament debated a petition seeking to impose sanctions on Nigerian Government officials involved in the shooting incident that occurred during the Endsars protest in Lekki on October 20.
During the debate, the Conservative MP Tom Tugendhat, a member of the parliament, urged his government to place sanctions on Nigerians who flee to the UK with ill-gotten wealth. He also spoke about Nigeria’s former military ruler, Yakubu Gowon’s alleged looting of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“What we are seeing in Nigeria today is part of that story. It is a tragedy we are all witnessing because we see things falling apart.
“The problem this time is not foreign pressure known as colonialism. The pressure instead is corruption and violence and attempts at control (of power).
“We need to call out the corruption, we need to use the powers that we have in this country to stop those who are profiting from the wealth of that great nation and hiding it here.
“Now some people will remember when general Gowon left Nigeria, he took half of the Central Bank, so it is said, and moved to London.
“We know today, even now in this great city of ours, there are sadly some people who have taken the wealth of Nigerian people and hidden their ill-gotten gains here.
“We know that our banks sadly have been used for that profit or that illegal transfer of asset and that means that the UK is in a unique position in being able to actually do something to really exert pressure on those who have robbed Nigerians.”
However, in an exclusive interview with the BBC, Gowon described the allegations as ”Rubbish”
“What the MP said is rubbish. I don’t know where he got that rubbish from, I served Nigeria diligently and my records are there for all to see.
I did not want to speak on this issue because people that know me know that what the MP said is not true” he said
After leaving power in a bloodless coup in 1975, Gowon went to the UK and enrolled at Warwick University as an undergraduate where he studied political science and international relations.