The former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon (retd) has enumerated how good intention for the country restrained him from appropriating lands for his personal use, according to him that is the only regret he has.
Gowon also said as a military leader of the time, he could have transferred the capital territory to his home state in Jos instead of Abuja, for was very cautious of sentiment and reactions from critics.
The former Head of State divulged this yesterday during the 26th anniversary exhibition and commendation of the movement of the seat of government from Lagos to Abuja, adding that he did not make Jos the capital because he was also afraid of being accused of parochialism, given the fact that Jos was close to his place of birth.
“One of the places I saw that attracted me was somewhere in Plateau, those of you who know the place, especially close to Jos forest, will agree that the area is beautiful and I thought that place was beautiful for the capital city,” Gowon noted adding that he “did not make that choice because I would have been accused of parochialism and favoritism, because it was very close to my original place where I come from. So I said no , I must look at other places.
“The search for a new capital took me round the north west, and in my state, I continued to look for other places. When I came to Abuja, I was attracted. “
“I had to officially complain to General Ibrahim Babangida when he was the Military President, that I have been excluded from getting a street named after me in Abuja, while all other members of the military council who nurtured the idea, had got streets name after them.”.