Late Chief Anthony Enahoro

FOLLOWING controversies on whether or not late elder statesman, Chief Anthony Enahoro, did anything warranting presidential pardon, veteran journalist, Eric Teniola, has said that the late nationalist was indicted by a military panel during the regime of late Major-General Murtala Muhammed.

Enahoro was convicted thrice for sedition during the colonial era. He was also convicted for treason by the Tafawa Balewa Government in 1963,  jailed and later pardoned in 1966.

Following the pardon, the nationalist served as Federal Commissioner (minister) for Information and Labour from 1967 to 1974 and then Special Duties from 1974 to 1975 under the General Yakubu Gowon-led military government.

After overthrowing Gowon, the Muhammed government set up a federal assets investigation panel in 1976, which indicted Enahoro and his assets were confiscated.

Enahoro; former governor of defunct Bendel State, Professor Ambrose Alli, and two others were granted presidential pardon, last week, sparking controversies in the polity.

Teniola, who reported the proceedings of the panel at the time, told The Cable that Enahoro was indicted.

Murtala Muhammed overthrew Gowon in a military coup on July 29, 1975.

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On September 16, 1975, Muhammed set up the federal assets investigation panel to probe all former governors, the administrator of East Central state and some federal commissioners who served in Gowon’s regime.

On February 3, 1976, the panel released its report and 10 of 12 former governors were found guilty of gross abuse of office.

The confiscated assets stood at about N10 million (equivalent of about $8 million in 1976).

Although an indictment is not a conviction, the “pardon” means the properties seized from Enahoro may now be returned to his family.

Eric Teniola said:  “The panel exonerated only two former military governors — Brigadier Mobolaji Johnson of Lagos State, and Brigadier Oluwole Rotimi of the Western State.

“The remaining 10 were indicted and the panel asked that all their assets be seized by the military government.”



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