Atiku Abubakar (Age, Career, Politics)
A politician and businessman from Nigeria named Atiku Abubakar led the country as Olusegun Obasanjo’s vice president from 1999 to 2007. He ran for governor of Adamawa State in 1990, 1997, and subsequently in 1998. He was elected, and in 1999 he served as Olusegun Obasanjo’s running mate. He was re-elected in 2003. In 1993, 2007, 2011, 2015, and 2019, Atiku Abubakar ran unsuccessfully for president of Nigeria. He is presently the candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party in the general election of 2023.
Early Life and Education
Atiku Abubakar was born on November 25, 1946, in Jada, a village that was then governed by the British Cameroons. After a vote in 1961, the village joined the Federation of Nigeria. His mother was Aisha Kande, while his father Garba Abubakar was a Fulani merchant and farmer. He was given the name Atiku Abdulqadir in honor of his paternal grandfather, who is from Wurno, Sokoto State, and moved to the village of Kojoli in Jada, Adamawa State. Inuwa Dutse, who is his maternal grandfather, moved to Jada, Adamawa State from Dutse, Jigawa State. He became the only child of his parents when his only sister passed away infancy. His father drowned in 1957 while traveling from Jada’s neighboring town of Toungo across a river.
When Atiku Abubakar was a child, his father resisted the idea of a Western education and worked to keep him out of the conventional educational system. Atiku’s father spent a few days in jail after the authorities found out he was skipping out on mandatory schooling while waiting for Aisha Kande’s mother to pay the fee. Atiku began attending the Jada Primary School in Adamawa when he was eight years old. He entered Adamawa Provincial Secondary School in 1960, the same year he finished primary school, together with 59 other pupils. After earning a grade three on the West African Senior School Certificate Examination, he completed secondary school in 1965.
Atiku spent a brief period of time studying for his high school diploma at the Nigeria Police College in Kaduna. When he was unable to provide an O-Level Mathematics result, he had to leave the college. He briefly worked as a tax officer at the regional ministry of finance until being admitted in 1966 to the School of Hygiene in Kano. After serving as the school’s interim student union president, he received a diploma in 1967. On a scholarship provided by the local government, he enrolled in the Ahmadu Bello University Institute of Administration in 1967 to pursue a Law Diploma. He worked for the Nigeria Customs Service following graduation in 1969, which coincided with the Nigerian Civil War.
In 2021, Atiku successfully completed and passed his Master’s degree in International Relations at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, United Kingdom.
Before returning to school, Atiku Abubakar spent a brief period of time working as a tax officer in the regional ministry of finance. After graduating, he was hired by the Nigeria Customs Service, where he spent the next 20 years working his way up to the position of deputy director, which was the second-highest in the service. He retired in April 1989 and began focusing exclusively on business and politics.
Due to his involvement in business while a federal officer with supervisory responsibilities, he was charged with conflict of interest. Abubakar, for his part, defended the choice by claiming that his engagement was restricted to share ownership (which was permissible by government regulations) and that he was not involved in the day-to-day management of the company. His company NICOTES eventually changed its name to INTELS, which later played a significant role in allegations of money laundering against Abubakar made by the U.S. government while serving as vice president.
His career in real estate began in 1974 when he secured a loan for 31,000 naira to construct his first home in Yola, which he then rented out. He bought another land and constructed a second home using the rent money. He persisted in doing this, amassing a sizable portfolio of real estate in Yola, Nigeria. In 1981 he started farming maize and cotton on 2,500 hectares of land near Yola. The company ran into financial trouble and shut down in 1986. After that, he started trading, purchasing, and reselling truckloads of sugar, flour, and rice.
When Abubakar worked as a customs officer at the Apapa Ports, he made his most significant business decision. He was invited to establish Nigeria Container Services (NICOTES), a logistics business operating inside the Ports, by Italian businesswoman Gabrielle Volpi in Nigeria. Later on, NICOTES would change its name to Intels Nigeria Limited and bring Abubakar enormous money. He is a founding member of Intels Nigeria Limited, a large oil servicing company with activities both domestically and abroad. In addition to the American University of Nigeria (AUN), the first private university in Sub-Saharan Africa built in the American model, Atiku also has other business interests in Yola, Adamawa. These include Adama Beverages Limited, a beverage manufacturing facility in Yola, an animal feed factory, and the American University of Nigeria. April 1989 marked his retirement.
When Bamanga Tukur ran for governor of his state, Atiku Abubakar began his political career as an undercover operative. Atiku then met Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, who extended an invitation to him to attend a political gathering that was typically held in his home. Quickly, he maneuvered his way into the position of national vice-chairman for the People Front of Nigeria. He held several positions within his political party before attempting to become the governor of Adamawa State in 1991, however, he was unsuccessful. He later crossed over to the People’s Democratic Party, where he eventually became the governor of the state of Adamawa.
Under the direction of President Olusegun Obasanjo, Atiku Abubakar was sworn in as vice president of Nigeria on May 29, 1999. Abubakar and his boss, President Olusegun Obasanjo, got into a spat in 2006 over his plan to change the nation’s constitution. According to rumors, Obasanjo wants to change the Constitution so he can run for president a third time. They became adversaries as a result of the significant confusion this generated among them.
In a similar spirit, Atiku Abubakar’s campaign for the presidency continued in the 2011 general elections, where he ran as a candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party. Sadly, he was defeated in the primaries by Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, a former president.
In order to pursue his dream, he defected to the All Progressive Congress in 2014, but Muhammed Buhari, the current leader of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, defeated him.
Atiku Abubakar declared his intention to run for president of Nigeria in 2018 under the PDP’s banner. He has stated his desire to become the leader of the country. They elected him at the party’s convention on October 7. He accomplished this after investing a significant sum of money in delegates. Unfortunately, On February 27, 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari defeated Atiku Abubakar once more in the presidential election. He would run for president in 2023.
With four previous marriages, Atiku Abubakar has twenty-eight kids. I wanted to join the Abubakar clan, he continues. I was really lonely as a kid. I had no siblings or brothers. I didn’t want my children to experience the same level of loneliness that I did. I married many spouses because of this. My spouses are my sisters, best friends, and counselors, and they complement one another.
In 1971, when she was 19 years old, he secretly wed Titilayo Albert in Lagos, despite her family’s initial opposition. He had six children with Ladi Yakubu, his second wife, whom he married in 1979. Atiku Abubakar later granted Ladi Yakubu a divorce, enabling him to wed Jennifer Iwenjiora Douglas as his fourth wife.
In 1983, he married his third wife, Princess Rukaiyatu, daughter of Adamawa’s Lamido, Aliyu Mustafa. Fatima Shettima, his fourth wife, married him in 1986.
Along with William Jefferson and one of Atiku’s wives, Jennifer Atiku Abubakar, he was charged in a global bribery scam. Following claims by commentators that Atiku was unable to enter the country, the U.S. government issued a statement in January 2017 stating that it would want the politician’s permission before disclosing the details of his immigration status. The real cause, according to Abubakar, is that his visa is still being processed. However, Atiku and Bukola Saraki recently traveled to the US on January 17, 2019, with the help of Brian Ballard.
A claim by former President Olusegun Obasanjo was brought up in another controversy in which Atiku was named. Because of his actions when he was in charge of the sales of the nation’s national assets and also the chairman of the National Economic Council, he asserted that Atiku is extremely corrupt.
It was also claimed that one of his wives, Jennifer Atiku Abubakar, filed for divorce from him after he urged her to sell their American properties and move to Nigeria. She filed for divorce from him and for custody of their children.
Titles and Honours
Abubakar received the title of Turaki of Adamawa in 1982 from his future father-in-law, Alhaji Aliyu Mustafa, the traditional head of Adamawa. The position, which oversees the monarch’s household affairs, has previously been designated for the monarch’s favorite prince in the palace. Abubakar applied for custody of their children and in June 2017 was granted the chieftaincy title of the Waziri of Adamawa, replacing his former title of Turaki.
The National Peace Corps Network (NPCA), an independent nonprofit organization that functions as an alumni association for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, presented Abubakar with the Harris Wofford Global Citizen Award in 2011 as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the US Peace Corps. The National Peace Corps Association in the United States received a $750,000 donation from Abubakar in 2012 “to fund a new effort featuring global leaders who will examine the impact of Peace Corps.” It was the largest single donation in the Association’s history.
With several priceless assets, Atiku Abubakar has a net worth of US$1.8 billion. He is the owner of an Embraer Phenom 100 personal luxury plane worth US$4.1 million and a US$2.95 million chateau close to Potomac, Maryland. He has a Lexus 570, a Toyota Land Cruiser, a Range Rover, a Mercedes S550, and other expensive automobiles. History of the association.
Atiku’s party is the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) headquartered in Wadata Plaza, Michael Okpara Way, Wuse Zone 5, Abuja. PDP was formed in 1998 and has been in power since 1999 producing 3 presidents before losing the 2015 general elections to the newly formed APC.
They form the majority opposition in the Nigerian political space.
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