Osuji: Obasanjo's Minister, Global Intellectual Lured Into N55m Bribe-For-Budget Scandal Dies - Green White Green - gwg.ng


Osuji: Obasanjo’s Minister, Global Intellectual Lured Into N55m Bribe-For-Budget Scandal Dies



Professor Fabian Osuji reportedly one of the greatest scientists of the modern era to have come out of Nigeria, famed as a scholar of scholars but whose global image was tainted by the N55m bribe for budget scandal of the Olusegun Obasanjo era has died at 81.

Professor Osuji famed as a good man by several who knew him including those who brought him into government became a victim of budget racketeering by some members of the National Assembly Committees of education in 2005. The alleged bribe demand led to the resignation of Senator Adolphus Wabara as Senate President following a nationwide broadcast by President Obasanjo and the trial of Wabara, Osuji and some other members of the National Assembly of Education who were alleged to be involved in the alleged bribe for budget scam.

Osuji was alleged to have taken the bribe in Ghana-Must-Go Bags alongside police and security details to the Apo Legislative residence of one of his friends turned lawmaker in December 2004 where members of the Education Committee came to share the booty.

However, Senator Wabara was exonerated following a 15-year trial. Osuji who had just turned from academia to government after being headhunted by Obasanjo was sacked and prosecuted for succumbing to the pressures for bribe for the Education budget to be passed.

He was also acquitted by the courts after a lengthy trial.

Senator Wabara who was mentioned during the Senate investigations as playing a central role in the alleged scam, however, subsequently let it out that the trial and scandal were fallouts from moves by the Obasanjo government to ease him out to allow the smooth implementation of the yet to unfold third term script.

Osuji was born on January 20, 1942, and attended Holy Ghost College in Owerri, Government College in Umuahia, the University of Nigeria in Nsukka, Enugu State, and the University of Ibadan, Oyo State.

He conducted his post-doctoral research at the Imperial College of Science and Technology in London.

He became a Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and Associate Professor in the Department of Zoology, University of Ibadan in 1973, a post he held till 1981.

He was also a Visiting Scientific Fellow at the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Food and Agriculture Organization.

He became a Dean of the College of Science, Dean of the College of Postgraduate Studies, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and member of the Governing Council of Imo State University.

He was appointed Professor of Applied Biology, at St. John’s University, New York (CUNY) USA (1997-1999).

Osuji was also a Visiting Professor at several universities in Nigeria and worldwide.

Known as a scholars’ scholar, he published 35 papers and books to his credit.

He celebrated his 80th birthday in 2022 when family and friends gathered to extol the virtue of a man highly regarded as a sound educationist.

GWG.ng reports that Osuji was the second minister sacked by Obasanjo over corruption and it followed the sack of Chief Sunday Afolabi, reportedly a friend of the former president over alleged misdeeds.

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