In this post, we’re going to discuss the list of all Nigerian presidents from 1960 (independence year) till date (2022) and the brief important information about all of them.
The President is both the head of state and head of government of the country and Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces.
President is responsible for the execution and enforcement of the laws created by Congress.
Now, let’s start discussing with you the list of all past Nigerian presidents from 1960 or Nigerian independence year till date, 2022.
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Past presidents of Nigeria from 1960 till date
The table below shows the list of all past Nigerian presidents from 1960 (years of Nigerian independence) till date (2022) and the respective years of their administration.
|CHIEF BENJAMIN NNAMDI AZIKIWE||OCTOBER 1, 1963 – JANUARY 16, 1966|
|MAJOR GENERAL JOHNSON THOMAS UMUNNAKWE AGUIYI IRONSI||JANUARY 16, 1966 – JULY 29, 1966|
|GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON||AUGUST 1, 1966 – JULY 29, 1975|
|GENERAL MURTALA RAMAT MOHAMMED||JULY 29, 1975 – FEBRUARY 13, 1976|
|GENERAL OLUSEGUN AREMU OKIKIOLA MATTHEW OBASANJO||FEBRUARY 13, 1976 – OCTOBER 1, 1979|
|SHEHU USMAN ALIYU SHAGARI||OCTOBER 1, 1979 – DECEMBER 31, 1983|
|MAJOR-GENERAL MUHAMMADU BUHARI||DECEMBER 31, 1983 – AUGUST 27, 1985|
|GENERAL IBRAHIM BADAMASI BABANGIDA||AUGUST 27, 1985 – AUGUST 27, 1993|
|CHIEF ERNEST ADEKUNLE OLADEINDE SHONEKAN||AUGUST 26, 1993 – NOVEMBER 17, 1993|
|GENERAL SANI ABACHA||NOVEMBER 17, 1993 – JUNE 8, 1998|
|GENERAL ABDULSALAMI ALHAJI ABUBAKAR||JUNE 9, 1998 – MAY 29, 1999|
|GENERAL OLUSEGUN AREMU OKIKIOLA MATTHEW OBASANJO (RTD)||MAY 29, 1999 – 29 MAY, 2007|
|UMARU MUSA YAR’ADUA||29 MAY, 2007 – 5 MAY, 2010|
|DR. GOODLUCK EBELE JONATHAN||6 MAY, 2010 – 29 MAY, 2015|
|MUHAMMADU BUHARI||29 MAY, 2015 – DATE|
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Sir Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa (Prime Minister)
Sir Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa was born in Bauchi state on December 1912 and died on 15 January 1966. He was a Nigerian politician who served as the first and only Prime Minister of Nigeria upon independence.
Balewa retained the post as Prime Minister of Nigeria when Nigeria gained independence in 1960, and was reelected in 1964.
1. Azikiwe Nnamdi (1 October 1963 to 16 January 1966)
Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe was the first President of Nigeria from 1963 till 1966. He was preceded by Queen Elizabeth II and succeeded by Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi).
Nnamdi Benjamin Azikiwe was born on 16 November 1904 and died on 11 May 1996. As he was usually referred to as “Zik”. He was a Nigerian statesman and political leader who served as the first President of Nigeria from 1963 to 1966.
Azikiwe travelled to the United States where he was known as Ben Azikiwe and attended Storer College, Columbia University, the University of Pennsylvania and Howard University.
2. General Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi (16 January 1966 to 29 July 1966)
Aguiyi-Ironsi had his primary and secondary school education in Umuahia and Kano, respectively. At the age of 18, he joined the Nigeria Regiment against the wishes of his sister.
Major General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi was born on 3rd March 1924 and he died on 29 July 1966. He was the first Military Head of State of Nigeria.
He was the second president of Nigeria and he ruled from 16 January 1966 to 29 July 1966.
3. General Yakubu Gowon (1 August 1966 to 29 July 1975)
General Yakubu Gowon is a Ngas (Angas) from Lur, a small village in the present Kanke Local Government Area of Plateau State.
He was the fifth of eleven children. He grew up in Zaria where he had his early life and education. At school, Gowon proved to be a very good athlete. As a matter of fact, he was the school football goalkeeper and pole vaulter. He broke the school mile record in his first year. He was also the boxing captain.
4. General Murtala Mohammed (29 July 1975 to 13 February 1976)
Murtala Ramat Muhammed was a Nigerian general who led the Northern counter-coup forces in overthrowing the Republic of Nigeria and featured prominently during the Nigerian Civil War and thereafter ruled over Nigeria from 30 July 1975 until his assassination on 13 February 1976.
|Year served||1975 – 1976|
|Position||President, federal republic of Nigeria|
|Died||13 February 1976|
He became the 4th Head of State of Nigeria in 1975 and was killed in 1976 by some members of Dimka’s abortive coup.
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5. General Obasanjo Olusegun (13 February 1976 to 1 October 1979)
Obasanjo joined the Nigerian Army in 1958. His leadership is seen as one of the most successful in the history of Nigeria. In fact, majority of the achievements of the military in Nigeria were under his government.
General Obasanjo Olusegun is one of the past governor generals of Nigeria that really contributed to the growth and development of the country. He was also called Baba Africa and was active during the Congo Crisis and the Nigerian Civil War.
6. President Shehu Shagari (1 October 1979 to 31 December 1983)
Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari (popularly known as Shehu Shagari) was the sixth elected president of the federal republic of Nigeria. After the power tussle and military coup that followed Azikiwe’s regime, Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari emerged as the first democratic elected president of the country.
Even before he was elected president of Nigeria, he was actively participating in the development of Nigeria.
7. General Muhammadu Buhari (31 December 1983 to 27 August 1985)
General Muhammadu Buhari was the seventh past Nigerian president from 1983 to 1985 and currently he is the president of Nigeria.
He was born in 1942 into a Fulani family. At his young age (19), Buhari was already a student at the Nigerian Military Training College (NMTC).
At 20 years he was given the title of second lieutenant and appointed Platoon Commander of the Second Infantry Battalion in Abeokuta.
Buhari was a crime fighter during his government, that is he hated corruption and tried everything possible to eradicate the problem.
8. General Ibrahim Babangida (27 August 1985 to 26 August 1993)
Babangida was born on 17 August 1941. He grew up with his parents until he officially joined the Nigerian Army on 10 December 1962.
During military rule in Nigeria, Babangida was seen as the key plotter of military coups.
He was an exceptional leader of Nigeria and one of the best military president Nigeria has had. Babangida removed Muhammadu Buhari during his military government and ruled until 1993 when he resigned.
9. Ernest Shonekan (26 August 1993 to 17 November 1993)
Chief Ernest Adegunle Oladeinde Shonekan was the first lawyer to become the president of Nigeria in 1993. Before he was appointed into power, Shonekan was the chief executive of the United African Company of Nigeria PLC, a large Nigerian conglomerate.
As a result of the pressure mounted on him to hand over power to a civilian government, Babangida handed over power to another president who is General Sani Abacha.
Hence, he didn’t complete his service tenure in the office.
|Years he served in office||26 August 1993 – 17 November 1993|
|Date of birth||9 May 1936|
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10. General Sani Abacha (17 November 1993 to 8 June 1998)
Genral Sani Abacha is one of the well known dictators and past president of Nigeria in the history of Nigeria. He served as the military head of state of the country from 1993 till 1998 when he was kill of heart attack.
During the Civil War, Abacha was the platoon and battalion Commander.
11. General Abdulsalami Abubakar (8 June 1998 to 29 May 1999)
General Abubakar was born in 1942 by Abubakar Jibrin, a well known personality in Minna, Niger State, Nigeria.
He had served in the Nigerian Air Force and Army in 1963–1966 and 1966–1999 respectively.
12. Olusegun Obasanjo (29 May 1999 to 29 May 2007)
During the regime of Olusegun Obasanjo, as a president, he was a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He spent most of his first term travelling abroad.
He is popularly called Baba Africa. Obasanjo became the president of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007.
13. Umaru Musa Yar Adua (29 May 2007 to 5 May 2010)
Umaru Musa Yar Adua was the former governor of Kastina state before becoming the president of the country from 29 May 2007 to 5 May 2010.
Sadly, former Nigerian president, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua died as a result of a sickness which he traveled outside the country for treatment. He died on 24 February,2010, hence, his vice president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan took over power as the president of the country till 2015.
14. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (29 May 2010 to 29 May 2015)
In 2015, president Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan lost the 2015 presidential election to Muhammadu Buhari. He pacificly handed over power to the newly elected president and said “Nobody’s ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian.”
Currently, Goodluck Jonathan is the chairperson of the newly inaugurated International Summit Council for Peace (ISCP). He is also known as the ambassador of peace.
Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan is a one time governor of Bayelsa state and president of the federal republic of Nigeria.
He was the vice president during Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s regime. After the death of Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, ex-president Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan promised to continue implementing the seven-point agenda policy framework of the former president.
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15. President Muhammadu Buhari (Current President)
Muhammadu Buhari hailed in Daura, Katsina State. He is a Fulani family man and his father died when he was 4 years old.
His government is hell bent on eliminating corruption in the country.
Prof. Yemi Osibajo is the vice president to Muhammadu Buhari in this tenure. President Muhammadu Buhari is a one time Governor of Bornu state in office from 3 February 1976 till 15 March 1976.
He was sworn in the office in 2015 with the All Progressives Congress (APC), defeating the incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan.
To most Nigerian citizens, President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration or regime or government is a very disappointing one.
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