- Nigerian senators have condemned the 1983 coup that overthrew the government of late president Shehu Shagari
- Recall that after Shagari's government was sacked by the military, the then General Muhammadu Buhari took over the leadership of the country
- The senators, who said the coup affected Nigeria’s development and unity negatively, called on the federal government to immortalise the former president
The 1983 military coup led by the then General Muhammadu Buhari which overthrew the government of late president Shehu Shagari has been unanimously condemned by Nigerian senators on Thursday, January 17.
The lawmakers condemned the coup during their contribution to a motion sponsored by Senator Ibrahim Danbaba and nine others on the death of the former president.
Legit.ng gathers that the senators asserted that the coup affected Nigeria’s development and unity negatively.
The senators called on the federal government to immortalise Shagari, who they said executed many projects across the country.
The Senate leader, Ahmed Lawan, showered encomium on the late former president, saying the latter was picked as the presidential candidate of the defunct National Party of Nigeria due to his trait of honesty and bridge building.
He said: “Shagari, being a nationalist, was able to sustain the coalition of government of national unity which produced Dr Edwin Ume Ezeoke on the platform of Nigeria Peoples Party as Speaker of the House of Representatives."
On his part, deputy Senate leader, Bala Ibn Na’Allah, commended Shagari for being a national patriot, saying despite what he went through in the hands of the military after the coup against his government, he still forgave them.
Senator Mao Ohuambuwa said Shagari was a great leader and bridge builder who meant well for the Niger Delta.
He said: “Unfortunately, he was toppled in a military coup in 1983 and the development which dragged Nigeria backward for 20 years also stalled the economic growth of the country."
Deputy president of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, also condemned the military coup that overthrew Shagari's government.
Ekweremadu said: “Shagari is a nationalist, who is committed to the unity of Nigeria. His life is a testament to how the President and his deputy could work together in harmony.”
In his motion, Danbaba said has an unblemished public service record which spans over a period of 30 years. He described him as a distinguished statesman that contributed greatly to the growth and development of democracy in Nigeria.
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According to him, Shagari promoted a massive housing programme, industrial development, especially the Ajaokuta Steel Rolling Mill, workers’ welfare, massive infrastructural development and the development of the Federal Capital Territory.
Shagari died at the age of 93 at the National Hospital Abuja, on Friday, December 28, 2018. His remains was transported to Sokoto for burial on Saturday, December 29, according to Islamic rites.
He was Nigerian president from 1979 to 1983 and won the second election before being dethroned by a coup d’etat that brought in Muhammadu Buhari as military head of state.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the death of Shagari was mourned by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), which said the country would have been industrialised if the 1983 coup that sacked his government did not occur.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) stated this in a statement in Abuja by its president, Comrade Ayuba Wabba.
In the statement, NLC stated that Shagari signed into law the National Minimum Wage Act of 1981 that provided for a new national minimum wage of N125 which was equivalent to about $200.
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