Nigeria regained her independence from Britain in the year 1960, but before gaining independence, there were some heroes among the citizens that fought for self governance. Reminiscing about history, and looking back in time, here is a list of three people whose faces are on naira notes that helped fight for Nigeria’s independence.
1. Chief Obafemi Awolowo on the 100 naira note:
He was born in Ogun state on the 6th of March 1909. Apart from being one of the pioneers of Nigeria’s independence, he introduced free education in the western region.
Chief Obafemi Awolowo studied law abroad and completed his education in 1947, after which he returned to Nigeria to practice. While in London, he wrote his first book “Path to Nigerian Freedom” where he criticized the British Administration, and advocated for self governance.
In 1954, he became the first premier of the western region. During his lifetime he published quite a number of books, and founded the political party called Action Group. He died on the 9th of May 1887.
2. Sir Ahmadu Bello on the 200 naira note:
He was born on the 12th of June 1910, and was the first president of the Northern People’s Party. Sir Ahmadu Bello was one of those who took active roles in the struggle for an independent Nigeria.
Upon his return from England, he was nominated to represent Sokoto in the regional house of assembly. He used his position there to promote the development of the northern emirates such as Borno, Kano and Sokoto.
He was also responsible for the modernization and unification of the diverse people of the North. He was assassinated on the 15th of January 1966 while he was still serving as premier of the north.
3. Dr Nnamdi Azikwe on the 500 naira note:
He was born on the 16th of November 1904 in Niger state. Fondly referred to as “Zik”, he became the first president of Nigeria after independence.
While working as the editor for the African Morning post, a daily newspaper in Ghana, he promoted pro African Nationalist agenda. He returned to Nigeria in 1937 and founded the West African Pilot which was a tool used to promote the cause of Nigerian Nationalism.
He died on the 11th of May 1996 in Enugu after an illness.