Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida GCFR (born 17 August 1941), is a retired Nigerian Army General who was President of Nigeria from 27 August 1985 to 26 August 1993. He previously served as the chief of army staff from January 1984 to August 1985. Babangida was a key player in most of the military coups in Nigeria (July 1966, February 1976, December 1983, August 1985, December 1985 and April 1990).
Participation in the Nigerian counter-coup of July 1966
Babangida, then a lieutenant with the 1st Reconnaissance Squadron in Kaduna, was one of the many officers of northern Nigerian origin who staged what became known as the Nigerian Counter-Coup of 1966 which resulted in the death of Nigeria’s first military Head of State, General Aguiyi Ironsi (who had taken power in another coup earlier that year), and his replacement with General Yakubu Gowon.
1985 Coup, overthrow of Buhari’s regime
Babangida was the Chief of Army Staff and a member of the Supreme Military Council (SMC) under the administration of Major General Muhammadu Buhari. Babangida would later overthrow Buhari’s regime on 27 August 1985 in a military coup that relied on mid-level officers that Babangida had strategically positioned over the years.
Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida was married to Maryam (née King) Babangida (deceased) (First Lady of Nigeria 1985–93). They had four children together: Muhammadu, Aminu, Aishatu, and Halimatu. Maryam Babangida died from complications of ovarian cancer on 27 December 2009.