48 Years After, Yakubu Gowon Confirms Paternity Of US-Returnee Son, Musa

Former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon(retd.) has confirmed fathering a love child with the late public relations expert, Princess Edith Ike Okongwu. This confirmation brings to an end the 48-year-old paternity dispute over Musa Gowon who returned to Nigeria in 2016, after about 23 years in a United States prison.Yakubu Gowon said he is Musa’s father following the report of a conclusive DNA test. In her lifetime, Princess Okongwu had dragged Gowon to court and the paternity dispute was the subject of a legal action that reached the Supreme Court in Nigeria, which Okongwu won. The execution of the judgment was however thwarted by the arrest of Musa by United States law enforcement officials in Dallas on the charge of importing heroin into the country.

The young Musa was sentenced to 27 years in prison and was only released in November 2016 on compassionate ground and good behaviour. While in custody, Musa Gowon in 2003 lost his mother, a leading socialite in Nigeria who was also a one-time public relations manager of Guinness Nigeria Plc. Yakubu Gowon and Princess Okongwu were friends in the 1960s. Gowon later married Victoria Zakari, a nurse, on April 19, 1969. In acknowledging Musa as his son in a statement issued yesterday,81-year-old General Gowon said: “Following years of doubts and speculation, a DNA test was recently conducted to ascertain the paternity of Musa Gowon, who recently returned to the country. The results of the tests were conclusive, and they confirm his paternity. We, the family, are working to assist in his rehabilitation following a very difficult period in his life. As we look forward to the future with faith in God, we request that our privacy be respected.”



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