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Nigeria politics

See Nigerian Commanders in Chief Since Independence (Photos)

A lot of Nigerians cannot readily say the names of the past Nigerian commanders in chief and the positions they occupied before becoming commander in chief. Below are the chronicles of Nigeria Commanders in chief and the positions they occupied before becoming commanders in chief.

1. Nnamdi Azikiwe

Nnamdi Azikiwe was born on 16 November 1904. He was first president of Nigeria from 1963 to 1966. He was the first indigenous governor general of Nigeria from 1960 to 1963. He was the first president of the senate from 1 January 1960 to 1 October 1960. He was also the premier of Nigeria from 1954 to 1959. He died on 11 May 1996.

2. General Johnson Thomas Aguiyi Ironsi

Aguiyi Ironsi was born on 3 March 1924. He was the first military head of state in Nigeria from 16 January 1966 to 19 July 1966. He was also the General officer commanding Nigerian army from 1965 to 1966. He died on 29 July 1966.

3. General Yakubu Gowon

General Yakubu Jack Gowon was born on 19 October 1934. He was the second Nigerian military head of state from 1966 to 1975. He was the chief of army staff from January 1966 to July 1966.

4. General Murtala Mohammed

General Murtala Mohammed was born on 8 November 1938. He was the fourth Nigerian head of state from 1975 to 1976. He was the federal minister of communication from 1974 to 1975. He was assassinated on 13 February 1976.

5. Olusegun Obasanjo

Olusegun Obasanjo was born on 5 March 1937. He served as military head of state from 1976 to 1979. He was president of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007. He was federal minister of petroleum resources from 1999 to 2007. He was 3rd chief of staff from 1975 to 1976. He was also federal minister of works and housing from 1974 to 1975.

6. Shehu Shagari

Shehu Shagari was born on February 25, 1925. He was the first democratically elected executive president of Nigeria from 1979 to 1983. Before becoming president he held the following positions

Federal commissioner of finance from 1971 to 1975.

Federal commissioner of economic development, rehabilitation and reconstruction from 1970 to 1971.

Federal minister of work from 1965 to 1966.

Federal minister of internal affairs from 1962 to 1965.

Federal minister of pensions from 1960 to 1962

Federal minister of economic development from 1959 to 1960.

Federal minister of commerce and industries from 1958 to 1959.

7. General Muhammadu Buhari

General Muhammadu Buhari was born on 17 December 1942. He was the military head of state of Nigerian from 1983 to 1985. He later served as president of Nigeria from 2015 till date. He is currently the federal minister of petroleum resources since 2015. He was governor of Borno state from 3 February 1976 to 15 March 1976.

8. General Ibrahim Babangida

Ibrahim Babangida was born on 17 August 1941. He was Nigerian military head of state from 1985 to 1993. He was chief of army staff from 1984 to 1985.

9. Ernest Shonekan

Ernest Shonekan was interim president of Nigeria from 26 August, 1993 to 17 November 1993. He was also head of government of Nigeria from 2 January 1993 to 26 August, 1993.

10. Sani Abacha

Sani Abacha was born on 20 September 1943. He was the military head of state of Nigeria from 1993 to 1998. He was the chief of defence staff from 1990 to 1993. He was also the chief of army staff from 1985 to 1990. He died on 8 June, 1998.

11. Abdulsalami Abubakar

Abdulsalami Abubakar was born on June 13, 1942. He was the de facto president of Nigeria from 1998 to 1999. He was also chief of defence between 1993 to 1998.

12. Olusegun Obasanjo

Olusegun Obasanjo was second executive president of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007. He formerly ruled as a military President from 1976 to 1979.

13. Umaru Musa Yar'Adua



Umaru Musa Yar'Adua was born on 16 August 1951. He was president of Nigeria from 2007 to 2010. He was also governor of Kastina from 1999 to 2007. He died on 5 May, 2010.

14. Goodluck Ebele Johnathan

Goodluck Johnathan was president of Nigeria from 2010 to 2015. He was vice president of Nigeria from 2007 to 2010. He was also governor of Bayelsa state from 2005 to 2007.

15. Muhammadu Buhari

Muhammadu Buhari is currently serving as president of Nigeria. He was once military head of state from 1983 to 1985.

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Johnson Thomas Aguiyi Ironsi Aguiyi Ironsi Murtala Mohammed Nigeria Nnamdi Azikiwe Nnamdi Azikiwe Yakubu Jack Gowon

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