Bola Ahmed Adekunle Tinubu is a Nigerian politician who has been serving as the National Leader of the All Progressive Congress, since the party’s formation in 2013. He is a former Governor of Lagos State, who held the position between 1999 and 2007, and also a Senator for Lagos State in the brief Third Republic. In June 2022, he was chosen as the All Progressives Congress nominee in the 2023 Nigerian presidential election. He holds the chieftaincies of the Asiwaju of Lagos and the Jagaban of the Borgu Kingdom in Niger State. Tinubu is an accountant by profession.
He was born on 29th March 1952 in Lagos State, to his mother, Abibatu Mogaji, who was a trader that later became the Iyaloja of Lagos State. In 2003, he released a book titled, “A Toast To Excellence: Selected Speeches of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Executive Governor of Lagos State”. Tinubu is married to Oluremi Tinubu, the current Senator representing Lagos Central Senatorial District; they are blessed with children and grandchildren. On 31st October 2017, Tinubu lost his son, Jide Tinubu, to a cardiac arrest in London. Asiwaju’s nephew, Adewale Tinubu, is the CEO of Oando PLC.
|Name of School||Degree||Year|
|St. John’s Primary School, Aroloya,|
|Children’s Home School in Ibadan|
|Richard J. Daley College in Chicago, Illinois||1975|
|Chicago State University||B. Accounting||1979|
Upon graduation, while in America, Tinubu was hired to work for: Arthur Andersen (an accounting firm), Deloitte Haskins and Sells (now called Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited), and GTE Service Corporation (the largest Communication and Utility company in the USA at the time).
At Deloitte, Tinubu participated in the auditing and management consultancy services of General Motors, First National Bank of Chicago, Procter and Gamble, International Harvester, General Electric and other Fortune 500 firms. He was often appointed the lead member of several important auditing teams.
He returned to Nigeria in 1983 and joined Mobil Oil as a Senior Auditor. He climbed the professional ladder, to become the company’s Treasurer.
Lagos State, Nigeria
29 March 1952
All Progressives Congress
Governor, Lagos State (1999-2007)
Senator, representing Lagos West Senatorial District (1992-1993)
National Leader, All Progressives Congress (since 2013)
Tinubu’s political journey began by being a founding member of the defunct Social Democratic Party. In 1992, he went on to be elected into the National Assembly, as the Senator representing Lagos West Senatorial District. He was appointed the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Finance, Appropriation and Currency.
Following the annulment of the June 12th, 1993 elections, Tinubu alongside other politicians founded the pro-democracy group, National Democratic Coalition (NADECO), with the aim of restoring democracy and ensuring that the June 12th election result was reinstated. After Sani Abacha’s military takeover in 1993, Abacha dissolved the Senate and frowned upon the activities of NADECO. Tinubu suffered arrests, detentions, harassment and constant threats, forcing him to go on a compulsory exile, first to the Benin Republic, and then to the United Kingdom, in 1994.
Following Abacha’s death in 1998, Tinubu and other politicians in exile returned to Nigeria. He became a founding member of the progressive political party, Alliance for Democracy (AD), and was nominated as the party’s gubernatorial candidate for Lagos State. Tinubu won the 1999 elections, emerging as the Governor of Lagos State. He was re-elected in 2003, becoming the only governor to be re-elected under the banner of the Alliance for Democracy. By 2006, his political party merged with other opposition parties, to create a new political party, the Action Congress (AC), which later became the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). Tinubu was instrumental in the formation of this new party.
Tinubu’s two terms were characterised by modernizing the city of Lagos and his feuds with the PDP-controlled federal government, led by President Olusegun Obasanjo. After leaving office in 2007, Tinubu retained his status as one of Nigeria’s most influential politicians as his allies often filled high offices throughout the South-West region.
Following the victory of the People’s Democratic Party in the 2007 presidential elections, Tinubu began negotiations to bring together the fragmented opposition parties into a “mega-party” capable of challenging the ruling party. In 2013, Tinubu facilitated the merger of the three biggest opposition parties – Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), to form the All Progressives Congress (APC). Due to his special role in the formation of the party, Tinubu was made the National Leader of APC.
In 2014, he supported General Muhammadu Buhari’s presidential aspirations for the 2015 presidential elections. Tinubu initially wanted to become Buhari’s Vice Presidential Candidate, but later conceded to Professor Yemi Osibanjo, his ally and former Commissioner of Justice. The All Progressives Congress won the 2015 general elections and was also re-elected into power in 2019.
On January 10th, 2022, Tinubu announced his intention to run for the Presidential seat of Nigeria in the 2023 presidential elections. On 8 June 2022, Tinubu won the presidential primary of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) scoring 1,271, to defeat Yemi Osinbajo and Rotimi Amaechi. He is the presidential candidate for the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 2023 election.
Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s political philosophy is one based on service. An aggressive goal getter and an astute administrator.
Awards & Honours
- 2018 Grand Commander Worthy leader of the Order of Niger (GCWLON) by the Osun Concerned Women Forum (GCWF)
- 2016 Champion of Democracy Award at the Global Village Extra Seminar and Awards Night, USA
- 2015 Pillar of Culture in Africa by AFRIMA (All Africa Music Awards)
- 2015 Thinkers Magazine Man of the Year Award
- 2015 Silverbird Man of the Year Award
- 2002 Best Practices Prize in Improving the Living Environment by the Federal Ministry of Works and the UN Habitat Group
- 2000 Best Governor in Nigeria conferred by the Nigerian-Belgian Chamber of Commerce
- 2000 Best Computerized Government in Nigeria Award by the Computer Association of Nigeria
- Honorary Doctor of Law Degree by the Abia State University
- Outstanding Student’s Award, conferred by the Chicago State University
- University Scholar’s Award, conferred by the Chicago State University
- Certificate of Merit in Accounting and Finance, conferred by the Chicago State University
- Created new ministries such as Housing; Physical Planning, Sports and Youth Development; Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation
- Took Lagos from a yearly Internally Generated Revenue of ₦14.64 billion in 1999 to ₦60.31 billion in 2006
- Introduced the Electronic Banking System/Revenue Collecting Monitoring Project; Introduced Electronic Tax Receipts; Computerized the revenue collection process
- Constructed new and affordable housing for Lagos State residents
- Re-organized the Board of Internal Revenue, to become the Lagos State Internal Revenue Service
- Created a robust database of taxpayers
- Under his administration, Lagos State was the first government in Nigeria to raise funds from the capital market for infrastructure development; raised a ₦15 billion floating-rate redeemable bond to prosecute development projects as roads construction, millennium housing, water works, construction and rehabilitation of courts, waste management projects, millennium classrooms, among others.
- Created an additional 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) governments to the existing 20 Local Government Areas (LGA), in order to fend for the population growth in Lagos state
- Tinubu’s career is plagued by accusations of corruption and questions about the veracity of his personal history. In April 2007, while preparing to leave office, the Federal Government brought Tinubu before the Code of Conduct Bureau for trial over the alleged illegal operation of 16 separate foreign accounts. In January 2009, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission cleared Tinubu of charges of conspiracy, money laundering, abuse of office and official corruption in relation to a sale of V-mobile network shares in 2004.
- In September 2009, there were reports that the British Metropolitan Police were investigating a transaction in which the Lagos State government made an investment in Econet (now Airtel). Tinubu said the transaction was straightforward and profitable to the state, with no intermediaries involved. The Federal Government rejected a request by Britain to release evidence needed for further investigation and prosecution of Tinubu in a London court.
- In 2015, a documentary film on the political life of Tinubu, titled, “The Lion of Bourdillon” was aired by Africa Independent Television (AIT). The hour-long documentary film revealed the personal life of the former governor, showing him participating in a certain level of corruption during and after his tenure in office as governor of Lagos State. It revealed properties and companies owned by the Senator across Lagos State, describing him as “Nigeria’s biggest landlord”.The film also revealed that he was charged with drug trafficking in 1993 by the United States Government. The documentary generated several controversies, leading to it being stopped from further airing after 5 days, following a ₦150 billion libel suit filed by Tinubu against AIT, on the grounds of “defamation of character”. Tinubu claimed that the documentary film was politically sponsored in order to tarnish his reputation as a Nigerian politician. AIT, in a counterclaim, emphasized that the broadcasting station was empowered and entrusted by Section 22 of the Constitution of Nigeria to hold those in government accountable and responsible to Nigerians. They further stressed that the content of the film were facts which had been in the public domain for over twenty years and were independently published prior to the airing of the documentary. The parties in the suit subsequently entered terms of settlement and amicably resolved the suit without proceeding to trial.