The Muhammadu Buhari-led administration recently repatriated $311 million from the popular Abacha loot.
However, in an interview with The Nation, Galadima said Abacha did not loot the money as widely believed by Nigerians.
According to Galadima, Abacha stashed the money abroad over the likelihood of the United States sanctioning Nigeria.
He said the late military dictator was advised to save some money outside the country by some of his colleague presidents around the world so there won’t be panic if the US eventually sanctions Nigeria.
“I have a completely different idea about what you called Abacha loot. I know as a fact that at that time, Abacha with knowledge of key members of his government, who knew about this money being stacked out, he was rightly advised by some of his colleague presidents around the world.
“Saddam Hussein was one of them. Muammar Gaddafi was one of them. They advised him that there was the likelihood that the US could sanction Nigeria and as such he should save money outside that could last the country, at least, six months, even Nigeria’s account was blocked by the US, there won’t be panic.
“I was a key figure in that government. I was one of the so-called Abacha boys if you must know. I was the director-general, National Maritime Authority, whereby export and import to Nigeria, including crude, were directly coming under my desk. So, am in position to talk about Abacha and the so-called loot,” he added.
Galadima insisted that the views by Nigerians that Abacha looted the money are based on ignorance
“Yes of course. It is based on ignorance. But the truth of the matter is that we are running a constitutional government called democracy. People can hold different opinion provided it does not encroach on another’s liberty. What I have said to you now is my own opinion based on what I knew of the government and the man at that time.
“If they say Abacha was a monster, my answer is, at least he held the country together and everybody knew you could not trample on our laws without being dealt with,” he added.
Speaking on the repatriation of the money, Galadima faulted the Buhari government on how it plans to spend the money.
He claimed that a spokesperson of the government whose name he did not mention said the money will be spent on palliative while the attorney general, Abubakar Malami, said the money will be spent on infrastructure.
“That is double-speak. And they should know, no matter who speaks for the government, Nigerians do not trust this government,” he said.
Galadima, a former ally of President Buhari who is now his staunch critic said the Nigerian government must secure the approval of the National Assembly before spending the money.