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1998: Major-General Abdusalami Abubakar sworn in as Nigeria’s 11th Head of State

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On this day 9th June,  1998 Major-General Abdusalami Abubakar sworn in as Nigeria’s 11th Head of State. General Abdulsalami Alhaji Abubakar (rtd.) became the 11th Head of State of Nigeria after General Sani Abacha died in office.

Abdulsalami Alhaji Abubakar hails from the Hausa ethnic group and was born on 13 June 1942 in Minna, Niger State. He was educated at Native Authority Primary School in that city, the Provincial Secondary School in Bida, and finally the Technical Institute, Kaduna. After this, he joined the military. Abubakar led Nigeria’s contingent in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon and eventually rose to the role of Chief of Defence Staff. His wife’s name is Fati and they have six children.

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Nigeria had been ruled by military leaders since Muhammadu Buhari seized power from Shehu Shagari in a 1983 coup.Although democratic elections had been held in 1993, they were annulled by General Ibrahim Babangida. Reported to have had an initial reluctance to accepting the position, Abubakar was sworn in as president on 9 June 1998 after the unexpected death of Abacha. He declared a weeklong period of national mourning.

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