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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 September 2006, 09:32 GMT 10:32 UK
Ex-Nigerian leader seeks return
Former Nigerian military ruler Gen Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida
Gen Babangida said he had organised free elections
Former Nigerian military ruler Gen Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, a leading candidate in next year's elections, has said he is proud of his time in office.

Gen Babangida, known as IBB, is extremely wealthy and is seen as one of the kingmakers in Nigerian politics.

But the BBC Nigeria correspondent says his military regime was accused of massive corruption and annulled democratic elections in 1993.

The former leader told the BBC he had brought development to the country.

'Credit'

"In eight years, we made a lot of progress and development of this country and people also benefited," the former military ruler told the BBC's Network Africa programme.

He also said organising the 1993 election was a "credit".

General Obasanjo
There is a lot of jockeying to replacing President Obasanjo
The results were cancelled as Moshood Abiola was about to win. He later died in prison after declaring himself president.

Gen Babangida said the election had been hailed as "one of the best and freest elections that has ever been conducted in the country".

He refused to explain why they had been cancelled, saying reasons had been given at the time.

Gen Babangida is seeking to be the candidate of the ruling People's Democratic Party.

However, the PDP is deeply split between supporters of the incumbent Olusegun Obasanjo and Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.

They fell out after the vice-president backed the successful campaign to stop President Obasanjo seeking a third term in office.

He accuses Mr Obasanjo of trying to block him from running in elections in April next year.

Some analysts say a lot depends on whether Mr Obasanjo will choose to back Gen Babangida or try to stop him.


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