Former Minister of Defence, Lt-Gen Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma (Rtd) was at the Minna Hilltop residence of former military President General Ibrahim Babangida on Wednesday.
Sources said Danjuma disembarked from the private aircraft at Minna airport around 3pm and was assisted into a waiting vehicle and was driven straight to the palatial residence of Babangida where they had a closed-door meeting, details of which are unknown.
But watchers of political developments said that the meeting is not unconnected with events leading to next year’s general election. Both Danjuma and IBB are founding fathers of the People Democratic Party (PDP).
In 2007 and 2011, Babangida made an attempt to run for the presidency on the platform of the PDP unsuccessfully but that has no deterred him from having a soft spot for the party.
Last year during his 80th birthday celebrations, he recommended that Nigerians should vote for a middle age president no older than 65 years.
Expectedly, it elicited mixed reactions from different quarters.
Of late, Babangida had played host to a number of leading politicians eyeing presidential mandate who consulted him with the view of getting his endorsement.
‘The visitor spent roughly an hour conferring with his host and emerged without uttering a word to anyone and made straight for the vehicle that took him back to the airport for his return trip’’ sources confided in us.
The source also revealed that the visit was shrouded in utmost secrecy as there was no clue prior to the arrival of Danjuma who was the Babangida Commanding officer during the civil war and Army Chief during the botched coup that killed late Head of State General Murtala Muhammed in 1976.
Danjuma (84) is known for his strong political views, which he seldom reveals, but when he does, they ruffled feathers.
He is seen, as one of the most influential figures in determining who becomes the president in 2023.He had been a major financier of President Muhammadu Buhari before he became President in 2015.
Danjuma had expressed his displeasure at the military saying that it was partisan in the conduct of security operations especially in dealing with bandit herdsmen.