Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Mrs Folorunsho Alakija, Africa’s richest woman by Forbes, on Saturday engaged in a war of words at the 2016 Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Forum.
The former president while reacting to an allegation by Alakija at the event, that the Obasanjo administration frustrated her effort when she ventured into oil business, said she was among the 25 billionaires he made during his tenure as President.
Alakija, who spoke before Obasanjo, alleged that his administration illegally took an oil block allocated to her company after her family had invested all its savings to strike oil in commercial quantity.
But Obasanjo seized the opportunity to reply to the allegation by Alakija. “There is a saying in my part of the world that when a proverb touches you and you failed to reply, then you are a coward,” he said.
Obasanjo explained that the action of the government then was in line with the Mining Act, which regulates oil prospection and exploration.
“For you to come here and say that, for no cause whatsoever, you were denied what was rightfully yours, is not fair. “I do not know you from Adam and there is no reason I would have denied you what rightfully belonged to you. “So, you have struggled, and you have struck oil. God bless your heart.
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