Sambo Dasuki

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Sambo Dasuki
Sambo Dasuki, National Security Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan, Nigeria (16160741168).jpg
Dasuki at Chatham House, January 2015
National Security Adviser
In office
22 June 2012 – July 2015
PresidentGoodluck Jonathan
Muhammadu Buhari
Preceded byOwoye Andrew Azazi
Succeeded byBabagana Monguno
Personal details
Born2 December 1954
Wusasa, Zaria, Nigeria
FatherIbrahim Dasuki
Alma materNigerian Defence Academy
Military service
Allegiance Nigeria
Branch/serviceFlag of the Nigerian Army Headquarters.svg Nigerian Army
Years of service1974 - 1993

Sambo Dasuki (born December 2, 1954) is a retired Nigerian military officer who served as National Security Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan and briefly to Muhammadu Buhari.

Early life[edit]

Dasuki was born on December December 2, 1954 in Wusasa, to the royal family of Ibrahim Dasuki, the 18th Sultan of Sokoto[1] and is his first son.[2] Dasuki attended Kaduna Capital School for his elementary education and later Government College, Kaduna, for his secondary education.[3]

Military career[edit]

He entered the Nigerian Defence Academy in 1972 and was classmates with future officers such as Colonel Kayode Are, General Owoye Andrew Azazi, and Admiral Ganiyu Adekeye.[4] Dasuki received his commission from the Nigerian Defence Academy in 1974 and was posted to an Army Headquarters platoon.

Coup d'etats[edit]

Sambo Dasuki (then a major) and military assistant to General Mohammed Inuwa Wushishi participated in the 1983 Nigerian coup d'état that installed Major General Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria's Head of State.

Later, Dasuki was among four majors (Abubakar Dangiwa Umar, Lawan Gwadabe, and Abdulmumini Aminu)[5] who arrested the Nigerian head of state Muhammadu Buhari in the 1985 palace coup led by Major General Ibrahim Babangida. Sambo Dasuki has consistently denied arresting Buhari.[6] Following the coup, Dasuki was made Aide-de-camp (ADC) to General Ibrahim Babangida.

Military juntas of 1985–1993[edit]

Dasuki worked as Babangida's aide until 1988, when he left the post due to alleged disagreements with the then Chief of Army Staff, General Sani Abacha. He then went to the US where he received further military training.[7]

In 1993, following the rise to power of General Sani Abacha, Dasuki was retired from the army. He was accused of masterminding a coup allegedly led by Lawan Gwadabe. Abacha regime also deposed Dasuki's father as Sultan of Sokoto, replacing him with Muhammadu Maccido.[8]

Later career[edit]

In 2001, Dasuki returned to Nigeria and was appointed as the managing director of Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company Limited (NSPMC). He resigned in protest against controversial privatization of NSPMC by former President Olusegun Obasanjo and retired into private business.[9]

National Security Adviser[edit]

In June 2012, Dasuki was appointed as National Security Advisor by President Goodluck Jonathan.[10]

In early 2015, Dasuki informed the Independent National Electoral Commission "that operations against Boko Haram militants meant the military "will be unable to provide adequate security" for the upcoming 2015 Nigerian general election. The elections, scheduled for 15 February 2015, were postponed until March 28.[11] Also in April 2015, he insisted that the Nigerian military would ensure that Sambisa Forest, the last fortress of Boko Haram, would be liberated before the May 29 inauguration of President Buhari's new government.[12]

Coincidentally, on the one-year anniversary of the abduction of Chibok school girls, Dasuki insisted that government was concerned about the welfare of every single Nigerian, not only the Chibok girls, as terrorists abducted other innocent Nigerian girls, boys, men, and women, and security agencies were making all efforts to rescue them. The military rescued more than 300 abductees a few weeks afterwards.[13]

Detention and release[edit]

On December 1, 2015, Dasuki was arrested by Nigeria's State Security Service (SSS) for allegedly stealing $2.1 billion[14] and accused of awarding phantom contracts to buy 12 helicopters, four fighter jets, and ammunition meant for Nigeria's military campaign against Boko Haram Islamist militants.[15] In November 2018, Dasuki was refused bail by the government despite being granted bail by four different high court judges.

The State Security Service[16] released Sambo Dasuki from detention on the 24 December 2019. His lawyer, Raji Ahmed, told Premium Times the former national security adviser was freed on Tuesday night. Dasuki's freedom comes hours after the SSS released Omoyele Sowore, an activist who was accused and subsequently arrested in August for an alleged conspiracy to commit treason and insulting President Muhammad Buhari over a planned #RevolutionNow protest.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lere, Babagoro, & Adebayo. "Unmasking Sambo Dasuki". The Daily Trust of Nigeria. Retrieved 9 July 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link) CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ "Unmasking Sambo Dasuki, The New NSA". Osun Defender. Retrieved 9 July 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^
  4. ^ "NDA Regular Course 12 Holds AGM". This Day Live Nigeria. Archived from the original on 14 July 2015. Retrieved 9 July 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Siollun, Max. "Babangida: His Life And Times (Part 4 )". Gamji. Retrieved 9 July 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ Yusuf, Alli. "1985 coup: Dasuki denies arresting Buhari". TheNation. Retrieved 18 December 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "Sambo Dasuki at the Intersection of Nigerian Politics". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 2020-02-28.
  8. ^ "Boko Haram: Who is Sambo Dasuki Nigerian security chief accused of stealing £1.8bn war chest?". International Business Times UK. 2015-11-19. Retrieved 2020-02-28.
  9. ^ Dasuki, Sambo; Ali, Yusuf; Odufowokan, Dare (June 30, 2012). "Unmasking Sambo Dasuki". The Nation newspaper. The Nation Newspapers and Publishing Co. Archived from the original on September 25, 2013. Retrieved 2013-09-21. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ "Guest Post: Nigeria's New Security: Dasuki in, Azazi out". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 2020-04-01.
  11. ^ "Nigeria Plans to Postpone Elections Due to Lack of Security". Deutsche Welle - 2015-02-07. Retrieved 2015-02-08. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ "Military to Liberate Sambisa Forest Before May 29- Sambo Dasuki". Sahara Reporters. 14 April 2015. Retrieved 2015-05-12. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ "Chibok: Bring Back Other Girls and Boys". YAShuaib Blog. 1 June 2015. Retrieved 2015-06-14. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "Boko Haram, Nigeria's jihadist group, is regaining strength". (subscription). The Economist (print edition: Feb. 16th 2019, p. 42, 1 column story). Retrieved 27 March 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ "Nigeria's Dasuki arrested over $2bn arms fraud". BBC. 2015-12-01. Retrieved 2015-12-01. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Sowore: DSS denied me phone access but granted same to Boko Haram commanders". TheCable. 2019-09-30. Retrieved 2020-08-05.

External links[edit]

  • Dasuki, Sambo; Ali, Yusuf; Odufowokan, Dare (June 30, 2012). "Unmasking Sambo Dasuki". The Nation newspaper. The Nation Newspapers and Publishing Co. Archived from the original on September 25, 2013. Retrieved 2013-09-21. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)