1983 COUP: See How Shagari Was Overthrown 37 Years Ago

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On 31st December 1983, the Nigerian military truncated the first democratically elected government of Nigeria Under the Presidential system of government led by Late President Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari.

On that Friday night, all was not well with Nigeria’s first civilian President as mutiny was been engineered by top echelons of the military after a 4-year break from 1st October 1979 to December 31st, 1983.

Late flamboyant Nigeria’s President Shehu Shagari has prepared himself well after attending some state functions at the state House Ribadu Road, he went in the evening to Obalende to perform Jumuat prayers.

Unknown to President Shehu Shagari that was his last Friday prayers as the duly elected President of Nigeria, presiding over the affairs of the most populous black nation on earth.

President Shehu Shagari after performing the Jumaat Prayers went straight to the council chambers of the president close to his office to record the New Year Speech as Nigerians set to wake up for the New Year of January 1, 1984.

Shagari planned to address the Nation from the Federal Capital Territory in Abuja from where he will have some rest before preparing to come back to Lagos to look ahead of governing Nigeria in his remaining three and half years in office, But Shagari runs out of luck as he was overthrown in less than 24 hours through Brigadier Sani Abacha’s Soft spoken voice on Radio Nigeria.

Before the coup, former President Shehu Shagari has called all interested parties to assure him of their loyalty to his administration as he has been hearing rumors of the military take over.

Shagari Narrated in one of his detailed autobiography Beckoned to serve how on a state visit to Plateau state to Inaugurate the National Institute for policy and strategic studies course in Kuru Jos Plateau state, the governor Chief Solomon Daushep Lar intimated him that Mr. President I have a serious matter to discuss with you, the president with his attentive ear said what was that.

Solomon Lar continued, Mr. President my wife is having a sister which her husband is a top military officer and he has developed the habit of not coming back home early, the wife pressurized him why is he coming back home late, he told her that they are planning a coup, but she should not tell anybody, on learning she came to tell my wife that we have to be very conscious of an impending rebellion by the military.

Governor Solomon Lar added that Mr. Prseident I have been planning to table the matter before the state’s security committee in which the GOC 3rd Division Major General Muhammadu Buhari is a member but I felt that you are in the best position to know as the commander in chief.

Shagari told Governor Solomon Lar that if he went back to Lagos he will ask the Director General Of The NSO Umaru Shinkafi to call General Buhari about the issue.

When Umaru Shinkafi confided in General Buhari about the matter he told him that he doesn’t know anything about it and if he is no longer trusted he will resign his commission from the Nigerian Army.

Shagari said when he was taken to a safe side when the mutineers approached state House to arrest him in the Peugeot Salon car in the early morning of December 31st, he heard the voice of Brigadier Sani Abacha announcing the overthrow of his government in a military coup<<Continue Reading>>>

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