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Late Brigadier Musa Usman: First Governor of North Eastern Nigeria


Late Brigadier MUSA USMAN (born in 1940, died 1991) was the first Governor of Northeast Nigeria (1967-1975).

He was born on 3rd Feb,1940 in Enugu to a Kanuri father and Igala mother.

He spent some of his time in Ibadan with his mother while his father, Usman Karagida was in far away Burma serving in a unit of the Rqyal West African Frontier Force.

On his return, be moved to Zaria and enrolled Musa in the military School. Before then, Musa had attended Goodbye School and St Michael’s School, Kaduna.

Musa Usman virtually stepped into his father’s shoes when he was enlisted in the Army in 1958 folk wing the advice of peopk like the late Brigadier Maimalari, Lt. Col. George Kurubo and Major Greenly who was the former Commanding Officer of the Military School in Zaria, In 1959, like most Nigerian Army Officers, Musa Usman went off to the Regular Officers Training School Teshi, Ghana, to begin his military training.

He was sent to the Mons Cadet School Aldershot. From there, nine months later, he proceeded to Sand hurst, England.

He graduated from Sand hurst in December 1961 with the rank of a Lieutenant.

He was then commissioned into the Nigerian Army and attached to the F-Battalion. In April 1964, he attended the Infantry Officer Associate career course in the U.S Army Infantry School, Fort Balvaing Georgia, USA. Musa’s real baptism of fire was in the Congo for when he thought the Army was going to be much fun he found himself in the Nigerian Contingent to the Congo to crush Tshombe’s secessionist moves.

On his return, be worked hard and bowed devotion to duty. Fortbishe a Major, he was appointed Commander of the Nigerian Air Force.

He held the position until he was appointed the first Military Governor of the North Eastern State comprising the former Borno, Bauchi, Adamawa and Sardauna Provinces.

He held this position throughout the life of that regime -which was terminated in 1975  , he then handed over to Muhammadu Buhari after a coup de’tat.

Finding himself presiding over the affairs of the largest state in the country then, was not a small  task, but Brigadier Musa Usman did his best in the circumstances welding together the different “nationalities” of the state in order to get them to work together for the overall development of the state.

After the coup that toppled their government he became a Director with Afrolux Aviation. The amiable General died in a German Hospital on the 14th ofSeptember, 1991.

May his Soul Rest In Perfect Peace

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