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National Party of Nigeria

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National Party of Nigeria

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The National Party of Nigeria (NPN) (now defunct), was the dominant political party in Nigeria during the Second Republic (1979-1983).

History

Formation

The party's beginning could be traced to private and sometimes secret meetings among key Northern Northern People's Congress (NPC) member. At formation, the party was able to draw beyond it core base of former NPC members and attracted some First republic politicians such as Joseph Tarka, former leader of the United Middle Belt Congress, K.O. Mbadiwe, one time minister and Remi Fani-Kayode, a former NNDP member. In October 1978, the party adopted zoning to elect party officials. The party then elected a new chairman, Augustus Akinloye, a Yoruba man and former Nigerian National Democratic Party government minister over contenders such as Fani Kayode, Adeyinka Adebayo and Adeleke Adedoyin. The election of a southern Nigerian paved the way for the presidential candidate to go to the core base of the party: the Hausa-Fulani states.

One of the campaign promise was implementation of Green Revolution as an agricultural policy.

Elections

The NPN presented candidates for two major elections, the 1979 elections and the 1983 elections. The party won 36 Senate seats out of 95 Senate seats and 168 seats out of 449 seats of the House of Representatives. On August 16, 1979, the party's candidate for presidential election was declared the winner of what became a disputed election. The party entered into a shaky alliance with the Nigerian Peoples Party to earn majority votes in the National Assembly, the alliance later hit the rocks in 1981. To gain support among Igbo people, the party allowed the return of Odumegwu Ojukwu, the Biafra leader.

Moshood Abiola, a former member of the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC), was not successful to hold chairmanship or presidential ticket of the NPN and later stood as the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the cancelled 1993 presidential election. Adamu Ciroma, a former secretary of the NPN, later became a senior member of the People's Democratic Party.

References

  • "AROUND THE WORLD National Party takes lead", The Globe and Mail (Canada), July 20, 1979
  • Shehu Shagari, Beckoned to Serve: An Autobiography, Heinemann Educational Books,
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