General Muhammadu Buhari’s Hatred Of Civilian Administrations

By Ikenga Chronicles August 8, 2018

General Muhammadu Buhari’s Hatred Of Civilian Administrations

–Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba,

Think back to December 31, 1983. Mr. Shehu Shagari was the popularly elected president of Nigeria. He was trying to rehabilitate Nigeria from the mismanagement of military men and was being assisted by his Vice President Mr.  Alex Ekwueme. At midnight on that fateful day one Major General Muhammadu Buhari struck. Both civilian leaders were arrested and detained. For reasons not yet given the president was sent home to his house and the vice president was sent to Kirikiri Maximum Security Prison for years.

It ought to be noted that Mr. Ekwueme was from the defeated Biafran tribe, Igbo, and to many that was his greatest offence. He had no allies and no connections. General Buhari’s hatred of the Igbo was long known and he was not going to hide it for a moment.

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On January 2, 1984 Gen Buhari assumed the position of Head of State and the Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces. On March 29, 1984 the General promulgated Decree 4, the most dreaded and the most repressive press law ever enacted in Nigeria before and since. The law was drafted to punish authors of false statements and reports that exposed the Buhari administration and or its officials to ridicule or contempt. GBTYO states that Decree 4 was promulgated in 1984 to shield Buhari’s corrupt past. The decisions of the military court under the decree could not be appealed to any other court.

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GBTYO suggests: “What was the motive of Decree No. 4? Why was such a dreadful law enacted? One possible reason was to stave off adverse criticism of the government, especially criticism that could suggest that Major General Buhari, the Head of State, or any member of his cabinet was corrupt. Buhari was aware of the rumour that spread when he came to power after toppling the government of President Shehu Shagari that he was corrupt just like the civilian politicians he had overthrown. It was alleged that he corruptly enriched himself when he was a state military governor and also knew about the disappearance of 2.8 billion naira in oil revenue allegedly missing when he was the federal minister for petroleum.” (”

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Fast forward to August 2018. Buhari’s APC government is under siege by some senators, House members, and governors from his own party and from the opposition, and PMB panics and goes on “working vacation” and hands over to his Vice President. But unbeknownst to others, he had already planned another coup to overthrow the troublesome legislators who had turned their backs on him. He wanted his VP to take the fall for him since he was out of the country. The VP is a professor of law and knows evil when he sees it. He called off NASS invaders and the coup planners and arrested the head of DSS who was the head of the conspirators and relieved him of his duties with immediate effect. Nigeria was lucky this time.

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Mr. Buhari’s second effort to overthrow a civilian government, the one he is in charge of, has failed for now. In a week he will be back and, as morning follows the night, PMB will try his hand again to get rid of the troublesome Senate President and the Speaker of the House.

The only thing Muhammadu Buhari has ever done in his life is soldering. Things like diplomacy, negotiations, feeling the pulse of the nation, and other soft skills, are beyond his grasp.

Like Lois XIV PMB likes to think: “Je suis l’État” –I am the state. He is not done with Nigeria yet. If he is not re-elected in 2019 he will either carry out a full blown coup d’état or rig out everybody.

With President Buhari, it is always; my way or the highway.


  • Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba writes from Boston, Massachusetts