Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri
The death has occurred of the first civilian governor of old Borno State, comprising of the present Borno and Yobe states, Alhaji Muhammadu Goni.
He died yesterday after a brief illness in Maiduguri, at the age of 78 years.
According to Wikipedia, Muhammadu Goni was born in 1942 in Kareto, Mobbar Local Government Area, Borno State.
He attended Maiduguri Middle School (1953–55), Borno Provincial Secondary School (1956–61), now Government College, Maiduguri; Provincial Secondary School, Kano (1962–63) and the Institute of Administration, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria (1964–67), where he gained a BA (Administration), specialising in international affairs.
In 1977, he transferred to the Nigerian National Supply Company (NNSC).
In April 1979, Goni resigned from the National Supply Company and joined politics. He was elected as the first civilian governor of the former Borno State, on the platform of the Great Nigeria People’s Party (GNPP), and was in office from October 1979 to September 1983.
He was also part of the Progressives Coalition led by Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
Goni founded the Borno Radio Television (BRTV) to counter the propaganda, which was being pumped out of the Federal Government owned and sponsored Nigeria Television Authority (NTA).
He was a member of the committee that drafted the 1995 Constitution. In the April 2003 general elections he ran on the United Nigeria People’s Party (UNPP) platform as vice-presidential candidate with Jim Nwobodo as the presidential candidate.
In January 2011 he was elected by PDP to be their gubernatorial flag-bearer in the April 2011 elections.
He later lost in the election to young Kashim Shettima of the ANPP, now Senator.
He would be remembered for his great achievements in Borno State in the areas of industrialisation, education, health, infrastructure development and road construction.