I hope to see my son one day — 82-year-old father of ‘underwear bomber’, Mutallab

By Godwin Isenyo, Kaduna 

Eighty-two-year-old billionaire businessman, and former Chairman of First Bank PLC and UBA, Alhaji Umaru Abdul Mutallab, says he hopes to see his son, Farouk Abdul Mutallab, who is serving a life sentence in a United States prison over terrorism act, one day before his death.

At age 23, Farouk fondly referred to as the “underwear bomber”, attempted to detonate plastic explosives hidden in his underwear while aboard a Northwest Airlines Flight 253, en route from Amsterdam to Detroit, Michigan, on Christmas Day, 2009.

Mutallab while speaking in an interview on Trust TV, monitored in Kaduna on Wednesday, said he was in touch with his son but under strict prison guidelines.

According to him, his son calls sometimes two or thrice a month, adding that “we cannot phone him but he’s the one who can phone us and we do speak”.

“Sometimes, he calls twice or thrice in a month,” Mutallab added.

He continued that Farouk’s mother, as well as his siblings, were with the “underwear bomber” about three weeks ago in the US.

“As a matter of fact, his mother, brother and sister were with him about two or three weeks ago.

“They visited him under very strict prison guidelines but we will keep on praying to Almighty Allah. Maybe one day in my lifetime, we would see him back. But it is a situation whereby he has 3 life sentences, plus 40 years. It is a lot.”

“But only Almighty Allah will bring us into a situation of seeing him in this world with his siblings here in Nigeria,” he added.

When asked whether he was among the 11th richest men in Nigeria, the former Minister and Chairman of Jaiz Bank said he would not consider himself one of the richest in Nigeria.

Mutallab said, “I am not a poor man, neither would say I am one of the richest persons in Nigeria, but I thank God for what He has given me. I’m grateful to Him. But I will not consider myself the 11th richest man in Nigeria by any chance.”

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