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About Atiku Abubakar



Atiku Abubakar was born on 25 November 1946 in Jada, a village which was then under the administration of the British Cameroons – the territory later joined with the Federation of Nigeria in the 1961 British Cameroons referendum. His father, Garba Abubakar was a Fulani trader and farmer, and his mother was Aisha Kande.


He was named after his paternal grandfather Atiku Abdulqadir who hails from Wurno, Sokoto State and migrated to Kojoli village at Jada, Adamawa State, his maternal grandfather called Inuwa Dutse migrated to Jada, Adamawa State from Dutse, Jigawa State he became the only child of his parents when his only sister died at infancy.


In 1957, his father died by drowning while crossing a river to Toungo, a neighbouring village to Jada.



Atiku Abubakar has worked in Nigeria Customer services as the Deputy Director.


Abubakar’s into politics was in the early 1980s, when he worked behind-the-scenes on the governorship campaign of Bamanga Tukur, who at that time was managing director of the Nigeria Ports Authority.


He canvassed for votes on behalf of Tukur, and also donated to the campaign.


Towards the end of his Customs career, he met General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, who had been second-in-command Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters between 1976 and 1979.


Atiku Abubakar was drawn by Yar’Adua into the political meetings that were now happening regularly in Yar’Adua’s Lagos home, which gave rise to the Peoples Front of Nigeria (PFN).


The PFN included politicians such as Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, Baba Gana Kingibe, Bola Tinubu, Sabo Bakin Zuwo, Rabiu Kwankwaso, Abdullahi Aliyu Sumaila and Abubakar Koko.


In 1989, Abubakar was elected the National Vice-Chairman of the Peoples Front of Nigeria in the build-up to the Third Nigerian Republic. Abubakar won a seat to represent his constituency at the 1989 Constituent Assembly, set up to decide a new constitution for Nigeria.


The People’s Front was eventually denied registration by the military government (none of the groups that applied was registered), and the PFN merged with the government-created Social Democratic Party (SDP).


On 1 September 1990, Atiku Abubakar announced his Gongola State gubernatorial bid.


A year later, before the elections could hold, Gongola State was broken up into two – Adamawa and Taraba States – by the Federal Government.


Abubakar fell into the new Adamawa State. After the contest he won the SDP Primaries in November 1991, but was soon disqualified by the government from contesting the elections.


In 1993, Atiku Abubakar contested the SDP presidential primaries. The results after the first ballot of the primaries held in Jos was: Moshood Abiola with 3,617 votes, Baba Gana Kingibe with 3,255 votes and Abubakar with 2,066 votes.


Abubakar and Kingibe considered joining forces combining 5,231 votes to challenge Abiola. However, after Shehu Yar’Adua asked Atiku Abubakar to withdraw from the campaign, with Abiola promising to make him his running mate.


Abiola was later pressured by SDP governors to select Kinigbe as his Vice-presidential running mate, in the June 12 presidential election.


After the June 12 and during the General Sani Abacha transition, Atiku Abubakar he showed interest to contest for the Gubnetorial seat of Adamawa State under the United Nigeria Congress Party (UNCP), the transition program came to an end with the death of General Abacha.


In 1998, Abubakar joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and later secured nomination for Governor of Adamawa State, winning the December 1998 governorship elections, but before he could be sworn in he accepted a position as the running mate to the PDP presidential candidate, former military head of state General Olusegun Obasanjo who went on to win the 1999 presidential election ushering in the Fourth Nigerian Republic.


On 29th May 1999, Atiku Abubakar was sworn in as Vice President of Nigeria. His first term was mainly characterized by his role as Chairman of the National Economic Council and head of the National Council on Privatization, overseeing the sale of hundreds of loss-making and poorly managed public enterprises alongside Nasir El Rufai the present Governor of Kaduna State.


Atiku Abubakar’s second term as vice president was marked by a stormy relationship with President Obasanjo.


In 2006, Abubakar was involved in a bitter public battle with his boss, President Olusegun Obasanjo, ostensibly arising from the latter’s bid to amend certain provisions of the constitution to take another shot at the presidency (Third Term Agenda).


However, the controversy generated by the failed constitutional amendment momentarily caused a rift in the People’s Democratic Party.


The National Assembly eventually vetoed the amendments allowing Obasanjo to run for another term. In 2006, Abubakar fell out with his boss Olusegun Obasanjo and left from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in preparation for the 2007 elections.


On 25 November 2006, Atiku Abubakar announced that he would run for president.


On 20 December 2006, he was chosen as the presidential candidate of the Action Congress (AC).


On 14 March 2007, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) released the final list of 24 aspirants for 21 April presidential election and Atiku Abubakar’s name was missing from the ballot.


However, INEC issued a statement stating that Abubakar’s name was missing because he was on a list of persons indicted for corruption by a panel set up by the government.


Atiku Abubakar headed to the courts on 16 March to have his disqualification overturned. The Supreme Court unanimously ruled on 16 April that INEC had no power to disqualify candidates.


The ruling allowed Abubakar to contest the election, although there were concerns that it might not be possible to provide ballots with Abubakar’s name by 21 April, the date of the election.


On 17 April, a spokesman for INEC said that Abubakar would be on the ballot. According to official results, Abubakar took third place, behind PDP candidate Umaru Yar’Adua and ANPP candidate Muhammadu Buhari, with approximately 7% of the vote (2.6 million votes).


Atiku Abubakar moves from various political parties to secure the position of the President.

Atiku- Peoples Front of Nigeria

Atiku- Social Democratic Party

Atiku- United Nigeria Congress Party

Atiku -Action Congress of Nigeria

Atiku- All Progressives Congress


Atiku Abubakar Presidential candidate and flag- bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP 2023 General election, if elected promises to drastically reduce the growing rate of unemployment in the country by creating jobs for the teeming youth in order to forestall its devastating backlash.


Abubakar launched the True Federalism campaign in 2017. He has been delivering speeches all over the country inspiring Nigerians on the need to restructure the country. He has been receiving massive endorsement for his stand on True Federalism.


He recently declared at an event where he was conferred the award Hero Of Democracy by Hall of Grace Magazine.


“Political decentralization will also help to deepen and strengthen our democracy as it will encourage more accountability. Citizens are more likely to demand accountability when governments spend their tax money rather than rent collected from an impersonal source.”


“True Federalism will encourage states to competes to attract investments and skilled workers rather than merely waiting for monthly revenue allocation from Abuja”


Many of his speeches have caused positive stir nationwide as Nigerians are supporting the idea of True Federalism which involves allowing states to have control over their resources most especially the South-South (Niger Delta)and South East of Nigeria.


Atiku Abubakar attended Jada Primary School, Adamawa.


After completing his primary school education in 1960, he was admitted into Adamawa Provincial Secondary Schoo were he took the West African Senior School Certificate Examination in 1965.


Studied a short while at the Nigeria Police College in Kaduna, in 1967 he enrolled for a Law Diploma at the Ahmadu Bello University Institute of Administration, In 2021, Abubakar successfully completed his Master’s degree in International Relations at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, United Kingdom.



In 1974, he applied for loan of N 31,000 naira to build his first house in Yola, which he put up for rent. From proceeds of the rent, he purchased another plot and built a second house. He continued to build a sizeable portfolio of property in Yola, Nigeria.


In 1981, he moved into agriculture, acquiring 2,500 hectares of land near Yola to start a maize and cotton farm. The business fell on hard times and closed in 1986. “The first foray into agriculture, in the 1980s, ended in failure,” he wrote in an April 2014 blog. He then ventured into trading, buying and selling truckloads of rice, flour and sugar


Abubakar’s most important business move came while he was a Customs Officer at the Apapa Ports. Gabrielle Volpi, an Italian businessman in Nigeria, invited him to set up Nigeria Container Services (NICOTES), a logistics company operating within the Ports. NICOTES would later go on to become Intels Nigeria Limited and provide immense wealth to Abubakar.


Abubakar is a co-founder of Intels Nigeria Limited, an oil servicing business with extensive operations in Nigeria and abroad. Atiku’s other business interests are centred within Yola, Adamawa; and include the Adama Beverages Limited, a beverage manufacturing plant in Yola, an animal feed factory, and the American University of Nigeria (AUN), the first American-style private university to be established in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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