EXCLUSIVE: How Aisha Buhari shutout ‘The Cabal’ from Aso Rock after Abba Kyari’s demise

Aisha Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari and First Lady Aisha Buhari (File photo)

The last may not have been heard of the power game at the Aso Villa, as First Lady Aisha Buhari, it is believed has repositioned herself to occupy her space which she once said “The Cabal” had deprived her of in her husband’s government.

The First Lady, had at a time raised the alarm that both the president’s cousin, Mamman Daura, and his late confidant, childhood friend, and former Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, the duo, alleged to be the head of the “Aso Rock Cabal,” had miffed her with their actions, especially after she said her office was wiped off at the Presidential Villa.

Even, at a time, a leaked video showing Aisha having a scuffle with Maman Dahura’s daughter, at the Villa went viral. In the video, the First Lady could be seen entering into fisticuffs with Daura family members, who, it was alleged locked her out of a particular room at the Presidential Villa.

Aisha alleged that the cabal had threatened her, even, in her matrimonial home, and that they had not only hijacked her husband’s government, she had equally lost her husband to them.

Hence, the reason an impeccable presidential source who confided in The Daily Leaks, said immediately the death of Kyari was announced April 18, by the presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, Aisha, swung into action to reposition herself as a force in her capacity as the First Lady, who must have a voice and must be reckoned with in her husband’s government.

Aisha Buhari
The late Abba Kyari (right) and Mamman Daura (File photo)

The death of Kyari, on April 17, a few hours before it was made public, as said on its own, was a death blow on certain forces in the Presidential Villa and at political circles in close touch with Kyari, “The Cabal,” being a rallying force, as they often rode on its back to get at the President.

Investigations revealed that these people, were not necessarily office holders, for instance, Mamman Daura, occupies no known office, other than being the President’s cousin, but he was said to be a very powerful member of the President’s unofficial team, himself and his family members even reside inside the Presidential Villa.

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Some of “The Cabal’s” members are said to be mere friends of the Villa, and immediately Kyari died, they were said to have swung immediately into action, first to protect their interest, and secondly, to look for a possible successor, their first interest being to enter into Kyari’s office to pack files and other valuable documents as gatekeepers protecting an interest in case things backfire.

However, Aisha, who, as a top game player too, and had awaited the moment she would be able to overcome Kyari’s high handedness, had already alerted her aides to be watchful, while also positioning them to be suspicious of movements around Kyari’s office. And had before anybody could place a demand before her mournful husband, President Buhari, ran to him to intimate him of the need to safeguard the Villa, and restrict movements from Kyari’s office, bearing in mind that he died from the highly infections coronavirus.

Aisha, whose interest, according to The Daily Leaks investigation was to deny “The Cabal” possible access to Kyari’s office having got hint of their plans, and thereby weaken their influence, especially when they won’t be able to make a follow up to many pending agenda, if not allowed to access files in his office, which was their prime interest at that time.

After Aisha’s meeting with her husband, investigations revealed that President Buhari reasoned along with her, to clip the wings of “The Cabal,” and gave a presidential order that Kyari’s office must be immediately put under strict security supervision and must be locked up with nobody gaining access until further notice, to deny those who had planned to pack sensitive files entry, except Kyari’s daughter, who he said should be supervised to pack her father’s personal effects from the office. That was the situation of things until a successor was discreetly announced.

After working on President Buhari to see things the way she sees it, Aisha, a reliable presidential source told The Daily Leaks moved to the next stage of dislodging “The Cabal’s” interest from Aso Villa, and to ensure that a more friendly person, whose interest will accommodate hers is appointed Kyari’s successor.

To effect this, sources said, at the exit of Kyari, who was at the centre of political mesmerising at the Villa, Aisha aligned with other interests who agreed with hers, who Kyari had equally denied access to the president to throw the first salvo, at the Presidential Villa and that was to dismantle the structure Kyari had built to rally people round himself. In fact, the sickness of Kyari and his eventual death, it was said created a lot of problems for “The Cabal,” Kyari, being the only rallying point to the President.

Then, to further destroy Kyari’s indomitable structure, regrouped forces set in motion the unannounced movements of people at the Villa, and reshaping of government structures by President Buhari, who was already hard-hit by the death of his right hand man he had described as a childhood friend and confidant.

This movement, it was also said caused the redeployment of the Permanent Secretary of the State House, Mr. Jalal Arabi, said to be a loyalist of Kyari, and others who occupied strategic positions having direct protocols to the President were also affected, especially a prominent one, whose access accreditation tag, was said to have been withdrawn so he would no longer enjoy unhindered access to the Villa again, without the cause of his visit not being probed.

After he was deprived of the presidential tag, this particular powerful person, it was reliably gather was only accessing the Villa as a visitor with limited access to the Presidency, and consequently, it denied “The Cabal” of the chance of having a direct dealing with the President, being a very important member of “The Cabal,” a power broker for that matter, who fed others with information about the goings in the Villa, and in fact, he was said to have been nominated by a prominent member of “The Cabal” to coordinate its activities in the Villa.

It was the fallout of these developments it was said favoured the choice of Professor Ibrahim Gambari, who though not a rookie making his first appearance at the Presidential Villa, or a distant person to President Buhari. But one thing that is clear is that he has not been directly involved in governance in the almost five years of Buhari’s Presidency nor known to have played a prominent role in his cabinet other than being a former Foreign Affairs Minister under Buhari’s military regime in 1984.