Five things Nigeria’s first executive president, Shehu Shagari, will be remembered for

Nduta Waweru December 29, 2018

He expelled foreigners in 1983

As a way of dealing with illegal immigration, Shagari expelled about 2 million foreigners in January and February 1983. Among these foreigners were about 1 million Ghanaians and at least 150,000 Nigeriens.  He made the infamous statement, Ghana Must Go, in relation to these expulsions.

According to a 1985 Associated Press news article:

“Thousands of illegal aliens, carrying mattresses, clothing and cooking utensils, poured back across the borders to their homelands today, ordered out by Nigeria’s military rulers. The foreigners had been attracted to Nigeria in part by an oil boom in the 1970’s, but now the West African nation has deep economic problems and an increasing crime rate, which it attributes in large measure to the immigrants.


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