12 June 1910 in Sokoto, Nigeria – 15 January 1966 in Kaduna, Nigeria
Sir Alhaji Ahmadu Bello also known as the Sardauna of Sokoto was born on 12th June, 1910 in Rabbah Sokoto.
He was one of the most influential leaders in early Nigeria and started politics in 1934.
In 1954, he became the first premier of the Northern Nigeria region. Along with his long time friend, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, he actively fought for Nigeria's Independence.
Sir Bello has been praised for the modernization and unification of the diverse people of Northern Nigeria.
On 15th January 1966, he was murdered in a coup that toppled Nigeria’s post-independence government. His photo can be seen on the 200 Naira note and the Ahmadu Bello University is named after him.
16 November 1904 in Zungeru, British Nigeria – 11 May 1996 in Enugu, Nigeria
Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe or Zik was born on the 16th of November, 1904 in Niger state and was a prominent figure of modern Nigerian nationalism. Zik became the first president of Nigeria after getting her independence from the United Kingdom.
While working as the editor for the African Morning Post, a daily newspaper in Ghana, Nnamdi Azikiwe promoted pro-African nationalist agenda.
Upon his return to Nigeria in 1937, he founded the West African Pilot which was a tool used to promote the cause of Nigerian nationalism. The newspaper had as it motto “To show the light and let the people find their way.” He founded the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC) in 1944 alongside Herbert Macaulay and he was made the secretary-general of the National Council in 1946. He was later elected to Legislative Council of Nigeria the following year. He was the first Nigerian to be named to the Privy Council of the United Kingdom and he also became the Governor General on the same day.
Zik became the second (but first indigenous) and last Governor General from 1960 to 1963 and the first president of Nigeria, following the declaration of Nigeria as a Republic in 1963. He fought tirelessly for an independent and united Nigeria.
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