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Former Nigerian Leader Ernest Shonekan Dies at 85

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By Aduragbemi Omiyale

A former Nigerian leader, Mr Ernest Shonekan, is dead.

The 85-year-old died in Lagos on Tuesday, several reports stated.

Mr Shonekan was handed over the affairs of the nation on August 26, 1993, by the former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida (Rtd) after the annulment of the presidential election held in June, which was believed to be won by late MKO Abiola.

On November 17, 1993, Mr Shonekan, who was the head of the Interim National Government (ING), was toppled by the late General Sani Abacha through a coup.

After he was removed from office, he lived a quiet life, contributing to issues of nation-building, especially as a member of the council of state, where he and others advised the incumbent leader on how to effectively run the country.

The deceased, who hails from Abeokuta in Ogun State, was born in Lagos on May 9, 1936. He was one of six children born into the family.

He attended CMS Grammar School and Igbobi College and proceeded to the University of London for a degree in Law. He later attended Harvard Business School.

In 1994, he founded the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), an advocacy group and think-tank for private sector-led development of the Nigerian economy.

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