Anegbehgate: The Aborted Diplomatic Coup D’état and Scam Aimed at Hijacking the Leadership of NIDO-Malaysia

It is a known reality that since its inauguration as a Non-Governmental body, various chapters of Nigerians in the Diaspora Organization (NIDO), are being faced with assorted challenges. While the European and American Chapters of this Non-Governmental Organization have grappled mostly with internally instigated leadership problems, the most dynamic Asian Chapter of this body, NIDOMY is known to be free from such plague.

Nonetheless, within the first four years of its existence, NIDOMY has struggled intensely to purge itself of questionable characters that once succeeded to ascend to leadership positions. The Organization whose leadership in the last two years has for the first time in its history maintained a non-involvement in any known or unknown criminal activities is now entangled in a Diplomatic Coup D’etat cum scam that is known as the Anegbehgate. The brains instigating this embarrassing situation, as well as the rationale behind this mischievous adventure constitute the focus of this piece.

The immediate cause of this crisis is the insistence of Mr. Anegbeh Peter, the retired High Commissioner to Malaysia to impose some hand-picked individuals as the successor of the outgoing leadership. In one of the meetings attended by the author of this piece alongside the outgoing President of NIDOMY, Dr. AbdulKarim S. Mohammed, Mr. Anegbeh declared in the presence of those in attendance that he has finalized the selection of names that would take over from the outgoing leadership. Mr. Anegbeh also stated that Dr. AbdulKarim shall be appointed to head this group of hand-picked individuals.

Reading meanings into my facial expressions and reactions to his outburst, Mr. Anegbeh audaciously declared whoever is dissatisfied with his arrangement should proceed to make use of the media and other channels to air his objections. Mr. Anegbeh boasted that as a sacred cow that enjoys the protection of the powers that be, such efforts will not affect his plans in the least. To establish how strongly connected he is, Mr. Anegbeh requested his critics to wonder why he was still running the affairs of the Commission months after he has not only retired from the civil service but also paid his severance allowance.

As soon Mr. Anegbeh made his final submission, Dr. AbdulKarim informed the former that he is neither interested in re-contesting for the post of the Organization’s president nor ready to be part of such unconstitutional arrangement. Before venturing into the major agenda upon which the meeting was focused on, Dr. AbdulKarim informed Mr. Anegbeh that at the appropriate time, he would be briefed on the transitional process that is hinged on necessary constitutional provisos of the Organization. This said, Dr. AbdulKarim opened discussion on the plans of NIDOMY to invite the likes of Mallam Nuhu Ribadu as Guest speakers in the event being proposed to make the 50th Independence anniversary of Nigeria as well as NIDOMY 2nd Annual Diaspora Day. Issues were also raised on the Commission’s plan as par the 50th Independence anniversary of Nigeria.

Prior to this meeting, there have been reports that during some of the Local Organizing Meeting(s) conveyed by Mr. Anegbeh to plan for the Commission’s 50th Independence anniversary of Nigeria, promises were made to appoint some of the LOC’s members as part of the team to be hand-picked. These members, amongst others, were one of the sources from which fund was sourced and obtained from, to sponsor the 50thIndependence anniversary of Nigeria because it was said that no fund was provided by the Federal Government of Nigeria to mark the event. It was during this fund soliciting drive that Mr. Anegbeh made promises meant to guarantee the interest of this particular segment of the fundraising sources. Realizing the benefits to be made out of such deal, the concerned individuals made generous cash, commodity and other forms of donations to the both the High Commission and Mr. Anegbeh as an individual. For the records, ten and six thousand Ringgits were the respective minimum amounts levied by Mr. Anegbeh on the Malaysians who have been conducting businesses in Nigeria for a long and short time. They were forced to make on the spot donations and pledges. What a national embarrassment!

However, when the news of the NIDOMY constitutionally inaugurated Electoral Committee (EC) reached the retired High Commissioner, frantic efforts were made by him to nullify the process. He toyed with different ideas which were aimed at getting his aims achieved. Those who were banking on him to deliver as promised ignored the transition process because it was felt that nothing can stop the all-powerful Anegbeh from delivering. As it was dawning on the potential benefactors of the donation-for-NIDOMY Executive positions-deal that things may not work as planned, Mr. Anegbeh came under increasing pressure and could not withstand the consequential backlash. Probably, he was afraid of what this particular segment of the donors could do to expose the volume of money that was realized through the 50th Independence anniversary fundraiser.

When Mr. Anegbeh realized foisting hand-picked individuals on the Organization as its new leaders won’t work, then, he came up with another idea by suggesting the setting up of Committees. These Committees, he enunciated, would be in charge of the affairs of NIDOMY after the outgoing Executive body is dissolved. Again, he was made to realize Committees could only complement the activities of the Executive body and not take over the latter’s responsibilities.

However, signs that things might work according to Anegbeh’ plans started to emerge when he smartly botched the attempt to hold NIDOMY’s AGM on the 13 November 2010 by putting forth why the High Commission’s premises won’t be available for this purpose on the said day. His reasons were that the High Commission would be handicapped as a result of playing host to the 900-membered Nigerian delegations who were to attend a world conference of Accountants, here, in Malaysia. It was also said that during the same period, the High Commission would be hosting Auditors from Nigeria. Based on these factors, NIDOMY Executive went ahead to postpone its AGM until 20 November, 2010.

The retired High Commissioner, Mr. Anegbeh made a deft maradonic u-turn, by requesting for an extended familiarizing meeting comprising the outgoing NIDOMY Executives, the EC members, the aspirants and those whose names have been penciled to serve on various Committees. This meeting, he ironically fixed for 13 November 2010. The outcome of the meeting was not in the retired Higher Commission’s favour, so, his request for a low-key meeting on 15 November, 2010. Again, he was disappointed with the outcome of this meeting.

When later contacted on the availability of the premises of the High Commission as the venue for the Organization’s AGM and elections scheduled for 20 November, 2010, Mr. Anegbeh summoned efforts to notify the NIDOMY President of his plans for that day.

Cognizant of the fact that the NIDOMY President was not cooperating with him, Mr. Anegbeh contacted Prof. Suleyman A. Muyibi in order to make him buy into his agenda.

Mr. Anegbeh briefed Prof. Muyibi how he plans to announce the names of the members that are to populate the Committee that would man the affairs of NIDOMY on an interim basis. In the consequence, the electoral process, would as planned the retired High Commissioner, be dismissed as null and void. This was relayed to the NIDOMY Executive members by the Prof. Consultations were made within the ranks of the Executive members on the next line of action which in effect gave birth to well-thought decisions.

It was decided that the AGM and the elections be postponed in order to map out strategies aimed at neutralizing Mr. Anegbeh’s plans. This decision was effected and well received by our members. One of his plans as it was discovered after serious

meditation and based on facts from certain sources was to create a full blown crisis situation by instigating his expectant benefactors to disrupt NIDOMY AGM and elections. On the basis of this, he would set up a reconciliation Committee which is to be populated by those who shall forge ahead to execute his predesigned agenda.

While planning to strategize on the next line of action, the attention of the NIDOMY Executive was drawn to a text message which emanated from the High Commission, calling for NIDOMY AGM and elections. After frantic efforts, NIDOMY Executive laid their hands on the outrageous text message that was sponsored by Mr. Anegbeh to factionalize and destabilize the activities of the Organization.

This development spurred author of this piece to make effort to speak with some of the staff of the High Commission and other stakeholders. After several attempts, Madam Francisca Marinho and Mrs. Dupe Quist Adebiyi, two senior staff of the High Commission were reached. It took hours of intellectual engagement before these two members of the High Commission staff were made to realize that they have no such powers being exercised by them. They were also informed of the actionable consequences of the High Commission’s inactions.

During the aforesaid conversation which lasted hours, one of the staff in question alleged that the present NIDOMY Executives were not elected but selected by Mr. Anegbeh. This grave historical distortion was corrected by calling the attention of Mrs. Dupe Quist Adebiyi to the fact that like the retired High Commissioner and other members of the Commission’s staff, she witnessed the fiercely contested election that ushered in the outgoing leadership of NIDOMY. Before, it was being said that NIDOMY does not have a constitution, now, what is being rumoured is what the outgoing Executives were selected by Mr. Peter Anegbeh.

Not minding the actionable implications of his inactions, Mr. Anegbeh proceeded with the conduct of the AGM of his camp of NIDOMY. A meeting that was mainly attended by Mr. Anegbeh’s town people and the expectant benefactors of his inactions recorded a worrying attendance.

This diplomatic coup d’état arising as a result of the scam whereby NIDOMY Executive positions were offered to the highest bidders ( Anegbehgate) is now seriously being fought by the outgoing NIDOMY Executives. Abuja intervention is now being sought to call the retired Diplomat to order and act decisively by imposing necessary sanctions on the members of staff of the High Commission who were involved in this aborted diplomatic coup d’état cum scam. Interventionists support is at the moment pouring in from concerned individuals who are afraid of how Anegbeh’s inaction could spell doom for the battered image of Nigerians in Malaysia.

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