Umaru Yar'Adua

Infobox President
name = Umaru Musa Yar'Adua

imagesize = 155px
order = President of Nigeria
vicepresident = Goodluck Jonathan
term_start = 29 May 2007
term_end =
predecessor = Olusegun Obasanjo
successor =
order2 = Governor of Katsina
term_start2 = 29 May 1999
term_end2 = 29 May 2007
predecessor2 = Joseph Akaagerger
successor2 = Ibrahim Sherma
birth_date = 16 August 1951
birth_place = Katsina, Nigeria
party = PDP
spouse = Turai Umaru Yar'adua
religion = Islam

Umaru Musa Yar'Adua (born 16 August 1951) [cite news |first= Olalekan |last= Adetayo |coauthors= Ebhuomhan, Sebastine |title= Was President Umaru Yar’Adua born on July 9, 1951?|url=|work=The Punch (Lagos) |publisher= Punch Nigeria Limited |date=2008-07-15 |accessdate=2008-07-17 ] [cite news |first= Steve |last= Ayorinde |title= The goof about the President’s birthday|url=|work=The Punch (Lagos) |publisher= Punch Nigeria Limited |date=2008-07-16 |accessdate=2008-07-17 ] is the 2nd President of Nigeria's Fourth Republic. He served as governor of Katsina State in northern Nigeria from May 29, 1999 to May 28, 2007. He was declared the winner of the controversial Nigerian presidential election held on April 21 2007, and was sworn in on May 29 2007. He is a member of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP).

Early life

Yar'Adua was born into an aristocratic Fulani family in Katsina;cite web |url=
title= Presidency: A Fulani Contest |accessdate=2007-04-21 |work= |publisher=Daily Independent (Lagos), Saturday, 21st April 2007
] his father, a former Minister for Lagos during the First Republic, held the royal title of "Mutawalli" (custodian of the treasury) of the Katsina Emirate, a title which Yar'Adua has inherited.Daily Trust, Yar'Adua Interview, March 3, 2007] Cite web| url= |title=Celebration Galore as Yaradua is Installed Mutawallen Katsina | accessdate=2007-09-21 | |publisher=This Day (Lagos), Thursday, July 4 2002] His name, Umaru, means "Prosperous". [ [ Meaning of Umaru in] ] He started his education at Rafukka Primary School in 1958, and moved to Dutsinma Boarding Primary School in 1962. He attended Government College, Keffi, from 1965 until 1969, and received a Higher School Certificate from Barewa College in 1971.cite web |url= |title= BIO-DATA OF HIS EXCELLENCY, ALHAJI UMARU MUSA YAR’ADUA EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR, KATSINA STATE|accessdate=2007-02-03 |work=|publisher=Yar' adua 2007] He attended Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria from 1972 to 1975, attaining a BSc in Education and Chemistry, and then returned in 1978 to achieve M.Sc Degree in Analytical Chemistry.



Yar'Adua's first employment was at Holy Child College in Lagos (1975-1976). He later served as a lecturer at the Katsina College of Arts, Science and Technology in Zaria between 1976 and 1979. In 1979 he began working as a lecturer at Collage of Art Science, remaining in this position until 1983, when he began working in the corporate sector.

He worked at Sambo Farms Ltd in Funtua, Katsina State as its pioneer General Manager between 1983-1989. He served as a Board Member, Katsina State Farmers' Supply Company between 1984-1985, Member Governing Council of Katsina College of Arts, Science and Technology Zaria and Katsina Polytechnic between 1978-1983, Board Chairman of Katsina State Investment and Property Development Company (KIPDECO) between 1994-1996.

Yar'Adua served as a director of many companies, including Habib Nigeria Bank Ltd. 1995-1999; Lodigiani Nigeria Ltd. 1987-1999, Hamada Holdings, 1983-1999; and Madara Ltd. Vom, Jos, 1987-1999. He was Chairman, Nation House Press Ltd, Kaduna between 1995-1999.


During the Second Republic (1979-1983), Yar' Adua was a member of the leftist People's Redemption Party, while his father was briefly the National Vice chairman of the National Party of Nigeria. During the Transition Programme of President Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, Yar' Adua was one of the foundation members of the Peoples Front, a political association under the leadership of his elder brother, the late Major-General Shehu Musa Yar'Adua. That association later fused to form the Social Democratic Party. Yar' Adua was a member of the 1988 Constituent Assembly. He was a member of the party's National Caucus and the SDP State Secretary in Katsina and contested the 1991 Governorship election, but lost to Saidu Barda, the candidate of the National Republican Convention and an ally of Babangida. In 1999, he ran for the same position and won. He was re-elected in 2003. He was the first governor to publicly declare his assets.Josephine Lohor, [ "Nigeria: Yar'Adua - I'm Worth N850m"] , "This Day" (, June 29, 2007.]

In 2000, during his administration as governor, Katsina became the fifth northern Nigerian state to adopt sharia, or Islamic law.cite web |url=|title= Nigeria's Katsina state adopts Sharia|accessdate=2007-06-20 |work= |publisher=BBC News, Tuesday, 1 August, 2000 ] In 2002 Amina Lawal, a woman from Katsina, was sentenced to death by stoning by a sharia court in the town of Bakori for committing adultery; the story attracted international attention. Her sentence was at first upheld by a court in the town of Funtua, then overturned a year later following an appeal.cite web |url=|title= Yar’adua and the woman who escaped stoning|accessdate=2007-06-20 |work= |publisher=The Nation (Lagos), Sunday, 22 April 2007 ]

Presidential nomination

On December 16–17, 2006, Yar'Adua was chosen as the presidential candidate of the ruling PDP for the April 2007 election, receiving 3,024 votes from party delegates; his closest rival, Rochas Okorocha, received only 372 votes.Tom Ashby, [ "Reclusive Yar'Adua wins ruling party ticket"] , Reuters, December 17, 2006.] Yar'Adua's success in the primary was attributed to the support of incumbent President Olusegun Obasanjo;Steve Bloomfield, [ "Obasanjo picks 'puppet' successor in elections"] , "The Independent" (U.K.), December 17, 2006.] At the time of his nomination he was an obscure figure on the national stage, and has been described as a "puppet" of Obasanjo who could not have won the nomination under fair circumstances. Shortly after winning the nomination, Yar'Adua chose Goodluck Jonathan, governor of Bayelsa State, as his vice-presidential candidate.

Another view of the support he received from President Obasanjo is that he is one of few serving governors with a spotless record, devoid of any suspicions or charges of corruption. He also belongs to the People's Democratic Movement (PDM) - a powerful political block founded by his late brother, Shehu Musa Yar'Adua, who was also Obasanjo's vice president during his military rule.

Yar'Adua, who suffers from a kidney condition, challenged his critics to a game of squash in an endeavor to end speculations about his health.Reuters [ "Candidate wants to squash health rumors"] , Reuters January 5, 2007.] On March 6, 2007 he was flown to Germany for medical reasons, further fomenting rumors about his health. His spokesperson said this was due to stress and quoted Yar'Adua as saying he was fine and would soon be back to campaigning. Another report, which was rejected by Yar'Adua's spokesperson, claims that Yar'Adua collapsed after suffering a possible heart attack.Tom Ashby, [ "Is Lagos candidate to ill to rule?"] Reuters ("IOL"), March 8, 2007.]


In the presidential election, held on April 21, 2007, Yar'Adua won with 70% of the vote (24.6 million votes) according to official results released on April 23. The election was highly controversial; it was strongly criticized by observers, and the two primary opposition candidates, Muhammadu Buhari of the All Nigeria People's Party (ANPP) and Atiku Abubakar of the Action Congress (AC), rejected the results, believing the election to have been rigged in Yar'Adua's favor. [ "Huge win for Nigeria's Yar'Adua"] , BBC News, April 23, 2007.]

After the election, Yar'Adua proposed a government of national unity. In late June 2007, two opposition parties, the ANPP and the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), agreed to join Yar'Adua's government. [ [ "Nigerian opposition parties agree to join government"] , Xinhua ("People's Daily Online"), June 29, 2007.] On June 28, Yar'Adua publicly revealed his declaration of assets from May (becoming the first Nigerian Leader to do so), according to which he had ₦856,452,892 naira (US$5 million) in assets, ₦19 million ($0.1 million) of which belonged to his wife. He also had ₦88,793,269.77 ($0.5 million) in liabilities. This disclosure, which fulfilled a pre-election promise he made, was intended to set an example for other Nigerian politicians and discourage corruption.

In June and July 2007, several governors who served with him before 2007 are being charged by EFCC, the anti-corruption commission. Many decisions of the former government like the hike in prices of petroleum products and VAT have been overturned by his government. Many see this as a sign that he is not a puppet of the former president Olusegun Obasanjo.

Yar'Adua's new cabinet was sworn in on July 26 2007. [ [ "Nigerian president names three to Cabinet energy posts, warns against graft"] , Associated Press ("International Herald Tribune"), July 26, 2007.] [ "Nigerian President swears in 39 ministers"] , African Press Agency, July 26, 2007.] It includes 39 ministers, including two for the ANPP.

Buhari and Abubakar filed petitions to have the results of the 2007 presidential election invalidated due to alleged fraud, but on February 26 2008 a court rejected the petitions. Buhari and Abubakar said that they would appeal to the Supreme Court. Marred with corruption, many argued that this election was rigged by Obasanjo as well as he wanted to have his successor have the same basic ideals he possessed as President. [ [ "Court rules Nigeria poll was valid"] , Al Jazeera, February 26, 2008.]

President Yar'adua is widely admired by youth in Nigeria, and recently Dr Muktar A. Gadanya, the youngest recipient of National Honour in Nigeria, has initiated a campaign to harness the goodwill of the of the youth for a succesful Yar'Adua presidency titled " God bless Nigeria's Yar'adua" This campaign is generating good publicity [ [] , Yar'adua, MDGs and Youth. Usman, U.A 2008.]

Marriage and family

Yar'Adua has been married to Turai Umaru Yar'Adua since 1975 and they have seven children.cite web |url=|title= Hajiya Turai: What Manner Of First Lady? |accessdate=2007-06-03 |work= |publisher=Leadership (newspaper) (Abuja), Sunday, 3rd June 2007] Their daughter Zainab is married to Kebbi State governor Usman Saidu Nasamu Dakingari.cite web |url=|title= 'Yar’Adua’s Daughter's Wedding Won't Affect Guber Case' |accessdate=2007-07-22 |work= |publisher=This Day (Lagos), Monday, July 16, 2007] Yar'Adua was married to Hauwa Umar Radda as a second wife from 1992 to 1997. They have two children.cite web |url=|title= The president is a committed father —Ex–wife |accessdate=2007-09-26 |work= |publisher=Sunday Trust (Abuja), Sunday, September 22, 2007] cite web |url=|title= An encounter with the president’s unreported family |accessdate=2007-09-26 |work= |publisher=Sunday Trust (Abuja), Sunday, September 22, 2007]


{2008}Bello Hammad, College of Education Azare, Bauchi state

External links

* [ Official campaign website]
* [ Nigeria's new leader 'worth $5m']
* [ Yar'Adua related News Items]
* [ Parts I] & [ II] of a campaign video on Yar Adua

NAME=Yar'Adua, Umaru
SHORT DESCRIPTION=President of Nigeria

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