Nigeria has lost a powerful man! Mallam Abba Kyari reportedly died on Friday, April the 17th from coronavirus. The 81-year-old Chief of Staff to the President of Nigeria, Muhamadu Buhari had in March went into self-isolation after testing positive for the Virus. The news of his death comes after a prolonged silence over his whereabouts since contracting the disease. Sadly, he was laid to rest on Saturday, April the 18th, at noon.
Before we dive Deep, Let’s look into 5 Reasons Why Abba Kyari’s Death is a Big Deal In Nigeria!
- Abba Kyari was Chief of Staff of the President from 2015 until he passed on in 2020.
- Abby is regarded as a key member of the kitchen cabinet of President Buhari’s office who makes all the important decisions, and that makes him a significant figure.
- According to the President’s wife, He is one of the two most influential persons in the president circle controlling the President. Aisha Buhari also claims the President’s uncle Mamman Daura is the other powerful figure.
- Mallam Abba Kyari’s is the gatekeeper to the President and speaks to him regularly if not hourly. Anyone who wished to see or talk to the President had to go through him.
- His death is a massive loss to President Buhari who trusted and relied on Kyari’s ideas and advice in other to make crucial and pertinent decisions in government.
Not much is known about Malla Abba Kyari’s early life. He was born in Borno state in 1938 and is of Kanuri descent. He had his early education in Nigeria, before moving to England where he studied at the University of Warwick and received a bachelor’s degree in law from Cambridge in 1984. According to the Information by Council on Foreign Relations, he had generally been in poor health most of his life.
Before becoming the Chief of Staff to the Nigerian President, Abba Khari worked in several reputable firms in Nigeria. He worked as an Editor with the New Africa Holdings Limited Kaduna in 1988 up until 1990 and served with the Borno State Executive Council as Commissioner for Forestry and Animal Resources. He became Secretary to the Board of African International Bank Limited, between 1990 and 1995.
Abba Kyari also worked as Executive Director, Management Services in UBA) and was later promoted to the Managing Director and Chief Executive of the Bank.
In 2002, he was appointed a Director Unilever Nigeria Plc.
He also served on the board of Exxon Mobil Nigeria.
Between 2000 and 2005, Khari served as an Honorary Member of the Presidential Advisory Council on Investment.
And In August 2015, Abba Kyari was appointed Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari.
Abba Kyari was married to the sister-in-law of former Nigerian sociologist, writer, and politician Ibrahim Tahir, and the marriage produced four children.
CARRIER WITH BUHARI
The 81-year-old was first appointed chief of staff to the President in 2015 when Mr Buhari came to power. He was reappointed in 2019 after his principal won the reelection. He was known as a very prominent and influential member of the cabinet and administration. He attends virtually all of the President’s meetings, photo-ops, and press briefings. He has been reported to have regular, even hourly, contact with the President.
He was perceived as the strongest man in the Buhari presidency.
The late Abba Kyari meant different things to different people. However, for a majority of Nigerians, he was the embodiment of whatever the administration represents, either for good or for bad. As the President’s closest aide, Abba Kyari, either rightly or wrongly, got the blame for the president’s actions, especially those considered labelled bad decetion.
This feeling, curiously extended to the First Lady, Aisha Buhari, who fought bitter battles with the late Kyari and his benefactor, Mamman Daura.
For Mrs Buhari, Kyari represented the worst about her husband’s administration, accusing him of hijacking the government, especially in the first tenure of the administration.
Some of the other controversies that trailed the former Presidential Chief of Staff includes,
El-Rufai’s sucker punch, The MTN Bribery Scandal and The Babagana Monguno Memo.
On 24th of March 2020, Abba Kyari tested positive to after he returned from an official trip from Germany. Kyari had travelled to Germany on March 7 to meet with officials of Siemens AG in pursuit of the deal recently signed between the Nigerian government and the energy company. He is suspected to have contracted the virus during this trip. Kyari’s blood sample was taken when the pandemic went viral, despite the fact that he showed no symptoms of the Virus. However, the result came out positive.
He moved from Abuja to Lagos where he was reportedly receiving treatments in a Lagos Hospital. No news of his recovery or battle was made known to the public again until his tragic death.
Kyari’s death is believed to be among the four new deaths announced by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) late on Friday, April 18.
The Nigerian President issued the following statement early Saturday announcing the demise of the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.