Shehu Shagari: 8 Things To Remember About Late Ex-President Of Nigeria

 

Former president of Nigeria, Alhaji Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari died on Friday, December 28.

The former president passed on at the National Hospital Abuja, he was aged 93.
Shagari was born on February 25, 1925, he served as the first and only President of Nigeria’s Second Republic (1979–1983).

After his service as president after the handover of power by General Olusegun Obasanjo’s military government.

There were no details as to the cause of his death.

However, beyond details of his death, below are 8 very interesting facts to remember about the lives and times of the Turaki of the Fula Sokoto Caliphate.

1. Born in Shagari Village

Shagari was born in the northern Shagari village founded by his great-grandfather, Ahmadu Rufa’i, who was also the Village Head and took the name Shagari as his family name.

2. Minister and Commissioner Extra-Ordinaire

With his great wealth of experience in service, Shagari served seven times in a ministerial or cabinet post as a federal minister and as federal commissioner from 1958–1975.

In 1954 Shagari was elected into his first public office as a member of the federal House of Representative for Sokoto west. In 1958, Shagari was appointed as parliamentary secretary (he left the post in 1959) to the Nigerian Prime Minister, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa and that year he also served as the Federal Minister for commerce and Industries.

READ ALSO: Former Nigerian President Shehu Shagari Is Dead

From 1959-1960, Shagari was redeployed to the ministry for economic development, as the Federal Minister for Economic Development.

In 1960-1962, he was moved to the Pensions ministry as the Federal Minister for Pensions. From 1962-1965, Shagari was made the Federal minister for internal affairs. From 1965 up until the first military coup in January 1966, Shagari was the Federal minister for works.

In 1967 he was appointed as the secretary for Sokoto province education development fund. From 1968-1969, Shagari was given a state position in the North Western State as commissioner for establishments.

After the Nigerian civil war, from 1970-1971, Shagari was appointed by the military head of state General Yakubu Gowon as the federal commissioner for economic development, rehabilitation, and reconstruction.

From 1971-75 he served as the Federal commissioner (a position now called minister) of finance. During his tenure as the commissioner of finance for Nigeria, Shagari was also a governor for the World Bank and a member of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) committee of twenty.

3. Man of Many Titles

In 1962, Shagari was made the Turaki of the Fula Sokoto Caliphate by the Sultan of Sokoto Siddiq Abubakar III. Turaki is a title which translates to the officer at court, referring to the sultan’s court at the palace of Sokoto.

Beyond the Northwest, Shagari also holds the chieftaincy titles of the Ochiebuzo of Ogbaland, the Ezediale of Aboucha and the Baba Korede of Ado Ekiti.

4. The Teacher

Shehu Shagari matriculated at the Teachers Training College, in Zaria, Kaduna, between 1944 and 1952.

He was a visiting teacher between 1953-1958, Shagari got a job as a visiting teacher at Sokoto Province.

He was also a member of the Federal Scholarship Board from 1954-1958

5. Founding Memberof the National Peoples Party

Shehu Shagari was a founding member of the National People’s Party in 1978.

In 1979 he was chosen by the party as the presidential candidate for a general election that year, which he won becoming the president and head of state of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Shagari ran for a second four-year term in 1983 and won the general election.

6. Overthrown By Major General Muhammadu Buhari

Shagari won the 1979 election with the help of his campaign manager, Umaru Dikko.

The campaign had the support of many prominent politicians in the North and among southern minorities.

The party’s motto was “One Nation, One Destiny” and was seen as the party best representing Nigeria’s diversity.

However, on 31 December 1983, Shagari was overthrown by Major General Muhammadu Buhari.

7. Father of Many Children

Shagari married three wives: Amina, Aishatu, Hadiza Shagari. He has many children.

However, his most visible children are Captain Muhammad Bala Shagari Rtd. and Aminu Shehu Shagari.

On 24 August 2001, his wife, Aisha Shagari, died in a London hospital from a brief illness.

8. Industrial Reformer

Shagari is reported to have made Housing, Industries, Transportation and Agriculture as the major goals of his administration during the oil boom.

In transportation, he launched some road networks across the country and initiated a program to foster the use of mechanical machinery in farming. It favored large-scale farmers in order to produce mass products.

He is also credited with creating a low-cost housing scheme.

With the oil revenue, Shagari finished building the Kaduna refinery in 1980 which started operations same year.

Also with the oil revenue, Shagari concluded the construction of an additional steel plant and three rolling mills at Ajaokuta, Nigeria.

Shagari completed the Delta Steel complex in 1982.

In 1983 he created the Aluminum Smelter Company of Nigeria at Ikot Abasi, Nigeria.

However, Shagari reduced the share of oil royalties and rents to state of origin from 30 to 2 percent.

Shagari’s government also embarked on a “Green Revolution”, distributing seed and fertilizer to farmers to increase nationwide productivity in farming.

Tackling Insecurity: Obasanjo Says Injustice At Root Of Problem

Olusegun-Obasanjo-former-Nigeria-President

Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has challenged world leaders to adopt measures aimed at defeating global terror.

Chief Obasanjo noted that more should be done to promote justice and fairness among citizens of the world.

He made the call in Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State at the 4th international colloquium, marking his 79th birthday on Friday.

The colloquium, which was attended by youths from 15 African countries, family members and friends of the former Nigerian President, was organized by the Centre for Human Security with the title; ‘Violent Extremism and Radicalization in Nigeria’.

Speaking on the topic, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Maiduguri, Professor Ibrahim Abubakar, called on political and religious leaders as well as leaders of thoughts in Nigeria to stand up and speak against the menace of terrorism especially the Boko Haram insurgency which has left thousands of people killed, billions of properties destroyed and millions of people displaced.

“The choice of the topic this time around is highly topical as violent extremism and radicalization, especially in Nigeria, is believed to be responsible for about 3.3 million displaced persons across the country.

“70% of this figure are children and women thought to be most vulnerable. This figure placed Nigeria as the third country with Internally Displaced Persons,” he said.

Professor Abubakar suggested good governance, respect for human rights, rule of law and accountability as some of the factors that could help in reducing community and group agitation that leads to extremism and radicalization.

General Obasanjo, however, maintained that the international community must be seen doing more in tackling global insecurity.

Obasanjo Advises FG On How To End Terrorism In Nigeria

ObasanjoFormer President, Mr Olusegun Obasanjo has advised the Federal Government to manage Nigeria’s democracy and terrorists without resorting to brute force.

The former president, who spoke on the state of the nation, reminded the Federal Government that his administration fought corruption using agencies like the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) and Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) to give the nation some level of integrity.

He warned that the dwindling economy and questionable character of leadership has ways of degenerating into physical violence.

Mr Obasanjo also criticized the government and the national assembly and accused the executive and legislative arms of government of being corrupt.

The Former President also spoke at length on President Jonathan’s handling of the economy and youth unemployment and urged the Federal Government to concentrate on education in the north-east.
Speaking during the public presentation of “The Story Of My Two Worlds; Challenges, Experiences And Achievements” written by Justice Mustapha Akanbi in Abuja, Mr. Obasanjo berated the high level of corruption in the national Assembly.

He also accused the Federal Government of making direct payments to the legislature in order to cover up its wrong doings.

“Corruption in the National Assembly also includes what they call constituency projects which they give to their agents to execute but invariably, full payment is made with little or no job done.

“In all this, if the executive is not absolutely above board, the offending members of the National Assembly resort to subtle or open threat, intimidation and blackmail. When the executive pay the huge money, normally in millions of dollars, all is quiet in form of whitewashed reports that fail to deal effectively with the issues investigated”, he said.

He however, noted that the National Assembly still has some lawmakers that have refused to be corrupt by others and wll not do anything to get invovled in corrupt practices.

“When the guard is the thief, only God can keep the house safe and secure,” he said. “But I am optimistic that sooner than later, we will overcome.

“God will give us guards of integrity and honesty with the fear of God and genuine love of their people and their country.

“Today, there is no institution of government that is not riddled with corruption, not even the military. As the people cry out, where then is the salvation.”

Mr Obasanjo also noted that “what the public know or see of the economy is not what the economy truly is.

“The economy is in the doldrums, if not in reverse. The often-quoted GDP (gross domestic product) growth neither reflects on the living condition of most of our people, nor on most of the indigenous industries and services where capacity utilization is almost 50 per cent,” he added.

Obasanjo Says Nigeria Not Lucky With Young Leaders

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has accused the younger generation of leaders of failing Nigerians as they have not exhibited integrity, probity and selflessness in their dealings while discussing issues on the integrity of leadership in Africa and sustainable development.

In his keynote address titled “leadership in Africa’s quest for sustainable development “, at a summit in Ibadan organised by the centre for sustainable development, university of Ibadan in collaboration with African sustainable development network, the fomer president said they lack integrity and probity and have failed their people woefully, and that the country may have been cursed with poor and irresponsible leaders.

Listing some younger Nigerians who had been in leadership positions, the former president said Nigeria was not lucky even with them.

He added that if after 53 years of independence, Nigerians have not commended any of their leaders as outstanding, it means in his words “then we are jinxed and cursed; we should all go to hell.”

Also, the Vice Chancellor University of Ibadan, Professor Isaac Adewole in his address, charged universities across Africa to play a leadership role in providing credible platform on national discuss on the future of the continent.