Theophilus Danjuma

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Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma

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Theophilus Danjuma
Chief of Army Staff
In office
July 1975 April 1980
Preceded by David Ejoor
Succeeded by Ipoola Alani Akinrinade
Federal Minister of Defence
In office
June 1999 May 2003
Succeeded by Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso
Personal details
Born (1938-12-09) 9 December 1938 (age 80)
Takum, Taraba, Nigeria
Military service
Branch/service Flag of the Nigerian Army Headquarters.svg Nigerian Army
Years of service1960–1979
Rank Lieutenant General

General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma GCON FSS psc (Rtd) (born 9 December 1938) is a Nigerian soldier, politician, multi-millionaire businessman and philanthropist. He was Nigerian Army Chief of Army Staff from July 1975 to October 1979. He was also Minister of Defence under President Olusegun Obasanjo's administration. [1] Danjuma is chairman of South Atlantic Petroleum (SAPETRO). [2]

Nigeria became an independent country on 1 October 1960 and in 1963 became the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The republic instituted two orders of merit: the Order of the Niger and the Order of the Federal Republic.

psc is a post-nominal for Post Staff College in the Commonwealth militaries of Britain, Bangladesh, Indian, Sri Lanka and Pakistan. It indicates that an officer has undertaken the staff officer course at a Staff College.

Nigerian Army Land warfare branch of Nigerias military

The Nigerian army (NA) is the largest component of the Nigerian Armed Forces, and is responsible for land warfare operations. It is governed by the Nigerian Army Council (NAC). It bears the brunt of the nation's security challenges, notably the Boko Haram insurgency.

Contents

Early life

Danjuma was born in Takum, Taraba State (formally Gongola), Nigeria to Kuru Danjuma and Rufkatu Asibi. Takum was mainly a farming community when Danjuma was young, and yams, rice, cassava, and beniseed were cultivated largely by families and clans in the community. His father was a hardworking peasant whose ancestors were all highly respected members of the community. Kuru Danjuma was a farmer who also traded in metal parts for farming implements and tools.

Takum LGA and town in Taraba State, Nigeria

Takum is a Local Government Area in Taraba State, Nigeria. Its headquarters are in the town of Takum, it is created out of Wukari local government in 1975, at 7°16′00″N9°59′00″E. Takum borders the Republic of Cameroon in the south, Ussa Local Government to the west, Donga Local government to the north, District within Takum are Abuja, kwambai, jenuwa, Rogo, Dutse, Kashimbila, Bete, Chanchanji, Bika.

Taraba State State in Nigeria

Taraba is a state in North Eastern Nigeria, named after the Taraba River which traverses the southern part of the state. Taraba's capital is Jalingo.

Yam (vegetable) vegetable

Yam is the common name for some plant species in the genus Dioscorea that form edible tubers. Yams are perennial herbaceous vines cultivated for the consumption of their starchy tubers in many temperate and tropical world regions, especially Africa, Asia, and Oceania. The tubers themselves are called "yams", and there is a variety owing to numerous cultivars and related species.

Theophilus Danjuma started his education at St Bartholomew's Primary School in Wusasa and moved on to the Benue Provincial Secondary School in Katsina-Ala where he was the captain of the school cricket 1st XI team; he received his Higher School Certificate in 1958. In 1959 Danjuma enrolled at the Nigerian College of Arts, Science, and Technology in Zaria (Ahmadu Bello University) to study history on a Northern Nigeria Scholarship. However, by the end of 1960, Danjuma had left the university to enroll in the Nigerian Army.

Wusasa is a town just outside the major city of Zaria in Kaduna State in Northern Nigeria. Activities of the colonial missionaries in the ancient city of Zaria forced the royal dynasty of Zaria to request them to move outside the city's ancient walls. The missionaries were given the liberty to select any place of their choice for the continuation of their activities. One of the reasons which informed the decision of the royal family to move the activities of the missionaries outside the city was the conversion of many residents of the Zaria city, including some members of the ruling class, to Christianity. The rulers, then, who were earlier reluctant in relocating the missionaries, found their activities intolerable when some members of the royal family began to accept Christ as their redeemer. This was why Dr. Miller, the head of the missionaries’ team, was asked to go anywhere outside Zaria city to find a convenient place to relocate his school. The missionaries had already built a school and a hospital in the city. Dr. Miller's school was becoming popular with each passing day. The need for space for the expansion of the Miller's school was another reason which forced the movement. When colonial explorers came to Zaria, they first settled in Babban Dodo inside the ancient city. Dr. Miller, who was given the liberty to choose a new settlement, opted for the present Wusasa and the Emir did not hesitate to give him the land to use on loan for 60 years.

Katsina-Ala LGA and town in Benue State, Nigeria

Katsina-Ala is a Local Government Area (LGA) of Benue State, Nigeria. Its headquarters are in the town of Katsina-Ala where the A344 highway starts. It is also the location of an important archeological site where artifacts of the Nok culture have been found.

Zaria LGA and city in Kaduna State, Nigeria

Zaria is a major city in Kaduna State in northern Nigeria, as well as being a Local Government Area. Formerly known as Zazzau, it was one of the original seven Hausa city-states. Today, it is known for housing Nigeria's largest university, Ahmadu Bello University, as well as being home to a number of prominent Nigerians.

Military career

Danjuma was commissioned into the Nigerian Army as second lieutenant and platoon commander in the Congo. In 1963, he joined a UN Peace-keeping force in Sante, Katanga Province in Congo, he was promoted to the position of a captain three years later. In 1966, Captain Danjuma was involved in the Nigerian Counter-Coup of 1966 with the 4th Battalion in Mokola, Ibadan.

Democratic Republic of the Congo Country in Central Africa

The Democratic Republic of the Congo, also known as DR Congo, the DRC, DROC, Congo-Kinshasa, or simply the Congo, is a country located in Central Africa. It is sometimes anachronistically referred to by its former name of Zaire, which was its official name between 1971 and 1997. It is, by area, the largest country in sub-Saharan Africa, the second-largest in all of Africa, and the 11th-largest in the world. With a population of over 78 million, the Democratic Republic of the Congo is the most populous officially Francophone country, the fourth-most-populous country in Africa, and the 16th-most-populous country in the world. Eastern DR Congo has been the scene of ongoing military conflict in Kivu, since 2015.

Katanga Province Former province in DR Congo

Katanga was one of the eleven provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo between 1966 and 2015, when it was split into the Tanganyika, Haut-Lomami, Lualaba and Haut-Katanga provinces. Between 1971 and 1997, its official name was Shaba Province.

Ibadan Metropolis in Oyo, Nigeria

Ibadan is the capital and most populous city of Oyo State, Nigeria. With a population of over 3 million, it is the third most populous city in Nigeria after Lagos and Kano; it is the country's largest city by geographical area. At the time of Nigeria's independence in 1960, Ibadan was the largest and most populous city in the country, and the second most populous in Africa behind Cairo.

In 1967, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel at the start of the civil war campaign towards Enugu, which was captured later that year. Towards the end of the Nigerian Civil War, Danjuma led a battalion that freed Jaja Wachuku, first Speaker of the Nigerian House of Representatives as well as first Ambassador to the United Nations and first Foreign Affairs Minister, from detention by the Ojukwu government.

Lieutenant colonel (pronounced Lef-ten-ent Kernel or Loo-ten-ent Kernel ) is a rank of commissioned officer in the armies, most marine forces and some air forces of the world, above a major and below a colonel. The rank of lieutenant colonel is often shortened to simply "colonel" in conversation and in unofficial correspondence. Sometimes, the term 'half-colonel' is used in casual conversation in the British Army. A lieutenant colonel is typically in charge of a battalion or regiment in the army.

Enugu City in Nigeria

Enugu is the capital of Enugu State in Nigeria. It is located in southeastern Nigeria. The city had a population of 722,664 according to the 2006 Nigerian census. The name Enugu is derived from the two Igbo words Énú Ụ́gwụ́ meaning "hill top" denoting the city's hilly geography. The city was named after Enugwu Ngwo, under which coal was found.

Nigerian Civil War 1967–1970 civil war in Nigeria

The Nigerian Civil War, also known as the Biafran War and the Nigerian-Biafran War, was a war fought between the government of Nigeria and the state of Biafra. Biafra represented nationalist aspirations of the Biafran people, whose leadership felt they could no longer coexist with the Northern-dominated federal government. The conflict resulted from political, economic, ethnic, cultural and religious tensions which preceded Britain's formal decolonization of Nigeria from 1960 to 1963. Immediate causes of the war in 1966 included ethno-religious riots in Northern Nigeria, a military coup, a counter-coup and persecution of Igbo living in Northern Nigeria. Control over the lucrative oil production in the Niger Delta played a vital strategic role.

In 1970, Danjuma attended the International Court Martial in Trinidad and Tobago as Nigeria's representative, where he was appointed president of the tribunal in a case brought against members of a failed coup attempt in Trinidad and Tobago. Following his promotion to Colonel in 1971 he spent next two years with responsibility for court-martialling Army officers proven guilty of corruption and indiscipline. In 1975 he was promoted to Brigadier and the position of General Officer Commanding (GOC), and in the following year he became the Chief of Army Staff to the Head of State Olusegun Obasanjo. He played a prominent role in supporting the president in resisting the Dimka Coup in 1976. [3] [4] He retired from the Nigerian army in 1979.

Trinidad and Tobago Island country in the Caribbean Sea

The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, is the southernmost island country in the Caribbean. Consisting of the main islands Trinidad and Tobago, and numerous much smaller islands, it is situated 130 kilometres south of Grenada and 11 kilometres off the coast of northeastern Venezuela. It shares maritime boundaries with Barbados to the northeast, Grenada and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to the northwest, Guyana to the southeast, and Venezuela to the south and west.

Olusegun Obasanjo Nigerian politician

Olusegun Mathew Okikiola Aremu Obasanjo, GCFR, Ph.D. is a former Nigerian Army general who was President of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007. Obasanjo was a career soldier before serving twice as his nation's head of state: He served as a military ruler from 13 February 1976 to 1 October 1979 and as a democratically elected president from 29 May 1999 to 29 May 2007. From July 2004 to January 2006, Obasanjo also served as Chairperson of the African Union. Obasanjo is the first Nigerian to serve as a military head of state and a civilian president. Today, he is an icon in the Nigerian political landscape.

Business career

Nigeria America Line (NAL)

Formed in 1979 by General TY Danjuma (Rtd), Nigeria American Line (NAL) began business and initially leased a ship called 'Hannatu' which traded between Lagos and Santos in Brazil when Nigeria's bilateral trade agreement had opened the sea routes to economies in the South American markets. NAL went on to win patronage from Nigeria's National Supply Company (NNSC) to bring in government goods . NAL's list of growing clients included DICON Salt (Nigeria), project cargoes for Iwopin Paper Mill, ANNAMCO and Volkswagen Nigeria. NAL became a member of AWAFC (American West African Freight Conference), Brazil-Nigeria Freight Conference and the Mediterranean Line (MEWAC). With the formation of the National Maritime Authority (NMA) IN 1987/88, the profile of NAL increased as NMA encouraged indigenous operators to claim their share of internationally traded cargo involving Nigeria. NAL began with a core indigenous staff of about 12 in 1979. In 2009, staff in NAL-COMET were closer to 250 including approximately 12 expatriate staff members. From the Lagos office the NAL-COMET Group has opened branch offices in Port Harcourt which serves Onne, Warri and Calabar seaports. [5]

COMET Shipping Agencies Nigeria Ltd

COMET Shipping Agencies Nigeria Limited was established in 1984 by Danjuma, primarily to act as an agent for Nigeria American Line (NAL). COMET has grown and by the late nineties became one of the largest independent agents operating in Nigeria with experience in handling many types of vessels and cargo. In 2009 Comet handled over 200 vessels at the ports of Lagos, Port Harcourt, Calabar and Warri. In 2005 NAL-COMET acquired a roll-in-roll-out port (RORO) in Lagos which makes it the largest independent port operators in Africa.

South Atlantic Petroleum Limited (SAPETRO)

South Atlantic Petroleum (SAPETRO) is a Nigerian oil exploration and production company that was created in 1995 by General T. Y. Danjuma. The ministry of Petroleum Resources in Nigeria awarded the Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 246 to SAPETRO in February 1998. The block covers a total area of 2,590 square kilometres (1,000 sq mi). SAPETRO partnered with Total Upstream Nigeria Ltd (TUPNI) and Brasoil Oil Services Company Nigeria Ltd (Petrobras) to start prospecting on OPL246. Akpo, a condensate field was discovered in April 2000 with the drilling of the first exploration well (Akpo 1) on the block. Other discoveries made on OPL 246 include the Egina Main, Egina South, Preowei and Kuro (Kuro was suspended as a dry gas/minor oil discovery). In 2004, SAPETRO's subsidiary in Benin won through a competitive tender process an oil exploration contract covering 550 square kilometres offshore from the Republic of Benin. In February 2005, SAPETRO was granted Oil Mining Lease (OML) 130 and thereafter the Federal government backed in through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). In June 2006, SAPETRO divested part of its contractor rights and obligations to China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC). SAPETRO produced its "first oil" (condensate) on 4 March 2009. In December 2009 SAPETRO donated a new state of the art medical centre to the Nasarawa State University. The medical centre, to be known as South Atlantic Petroleum Medical Centre would be available to serve the University, the local and neighbouring communities. [6]

NatCom Development & Investment Limited Nigerian business tycoon, Gen. TY Danjuma, was named Board Chairman by the NatCom Development & Investment Limited "NatCom", trading as ntel. The announcement was made on Wednesday, July, 2016 following General Danjuma's inaugural board meeting. ntel commenced commercial operations of its 4G/LTE-Advanced network on 08-04-16 in Lagos and Abuja. ntel is Nigeria's most advanced mobile 4G/LTE network providing superfast Internet Access that enables high-definition voice, data and video services. ntel's network is built on the 900/1800 MHz frequency bands which are the best propagation frequencies for the deployment of 4G/LTE technology. ntel's bouquet of services includes: National Bandwidth; International Voice Termination, International Bandwidth; Mobile and Fixed Communications services.

The company made its first on-net test data call in Lagos on Monday, January 18, 2016 and followed this with its first on-net Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) call in Lagos on Thursday, February 25, 2016. Commercial operations commenced on Friday April 8, 2016.

Politics

Since 1999 Danjuma has played an active role in Nigerian politics, some of his key appointments have been:

While in Office, Gen TY Danjuma sought to curb the politicisation of the military, and was a firm supporter of democracy and the Rule of Law. He also oversaw the renaming of all Nigerian barracks and cantons from those of civilian or living persons. He was also widely known to be an avid opponent of President Obasanjo's attempts in 2006 to engineer a way that would enable himself and state governors to serve more than two consecutive terms.

Danjuma serves as Chairman of the Victims' Support Fund Committee, supporting the victims of terror such as the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapping. On 16 July 2014, in a speech at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, Danjuma "told President Jonathan that Boko Haram insurgents appear to be having the upper hand, as they choose where to strike and capture territory ... Danjuma said the battle to win the insurgency war has already taken too long." [7]

TY Danjuma Foundation

In December 2008, the TY Danjuma Foundation was created in Nigeria.

The Foundation's principal aims are to provide durable advantages through the implementation of development programs. The Foundation plans to operate more as a philanthropic organisation rather than simply as a charity. This would allow for the foundation to seek out other deserving causes and Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to partner with and make grants available.

The TY Danjuma Foundation seeks to alleviate poverty in communities by providing basic amenities, education for children and young adults while also providing free medical care for indigent people. Currently, USD500,000 has been given out as grants to NGOs working to relieve suffering in Danjuma's home state of Taraba. Taraba is historically one of Nigeria's most impoverished states, compounded by the absence of a health service which catered for the masses. Furthermore, the state has the highest case of river blindness and other debilitating illnesses. [8]

The TY Danjuma Foundation is currently partnering with over 50 NGOs throughout Nigeria, and with the support and co-operation of 36 state governors. One of the many NGOs which is being supported by the Foundation is CASVI working in Takum, Wukari and Donga. CASVI's main area of expertise is on the provision of free eye care services such as the treatment of river blindness in Wukari, Ibi and Donga. [9]

See also

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References

  1. "Military revenge in Benue". HRW.org. Human Rights Watch . Retrieved 9 June 2007.
  2. "South Atlantic Petroleum Limited". MBendi website. MBendi Information Services (Pty) Ltd. Archived from the original on 11 March 2007. Retrieved 6 April 2007.
  3. "The Dimka Coup of 1976". Archived from the original on 21 November 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2010.
  4. "Nigeria Exchange News: General TY Danjuma's Mea Culpa" . Retrieved 16 November 2010.
  5. "Nalcomet Website" . Retrieved 16 November 2010.
  6. "The South Atlantic Petroleum Website" . Retrieved 16 November 2010.
  7. Isiaka Wakili (17 July 2014). "Nigeria: TY Danjuma to Jonathan – Boko Haram War Taking Too Long (Page 1 of 2)". Daily Trust – AllAfrica. Retrieved 18 July 2014.
  8. "All Africa News: Ty Danjuma Foundation – Inside Africa's Biggest Foundation..." Retrieved 16 November 2010.
  9. "Danjuma Foundation Website" . Retrieved 16 November 2010.

Further reading