Confusion over who ran Nigeria while Yar`Adua ill: Cable

Nigeria`s leadership was in total confusion over who was in charge early this year with then-president Umaru Yar`Adua thought to be in a "semi-comatose state,".

Last Updated: Dec 10, 2010, 10:50 AM IST

Lagos: Nigeria`s leadership was in total
confusion over who was in charge early this year with
then-president Umaru Yar`Adua thought to be in a
"semi-comatose state," a leaked diplomatic cable showed on Friday.

The cable, obtained by WikiLeaks and dated February
26, 2010, reported on a meeting between then-US ambassador
Robin Renee Sanders and Goodluck Jonathan, Nigeria`s acting
president at the time.

Jonathan became president in May after Yar`Adua`s
death.

If accurate, the memo paints an extraordinary picture
of Jonathan`s thinking, including his fears over what
Yar`Adua`s wife and allies may be plotting and an admission
that he was not the most qualified person for his job.

It also portrays US officials seeking to assist
Jonathan in various ways, such as suggesting how he should
present himself to the Nigerian public.

The ambassador stressed they were "counting on him to
steer Nigeria through this troubled and uncertain period,"
according to the cable. She also said the United States and
Nigeria "are very best friends," it stated.

Some 12 percent of US crude imports come from Nigeria
-- second behind Canada, according to September figures --
though the cable includes no discussion of the industry.

PTI