Ernest Shonekan


January 19, 2022

Ernest Oladeinde Shonekan (May 9, 1936 - January 11, 2022) was a Nigerian lawyer and businessman. He served in the country for a few months in 1993, when General Ibrahim Badamais Babangida was forced to resign as head of state. After Shonekan, General Sani Abacha took power. Before his presidency, Shonekan served as a lawyer and corporate director. He was, among others, the CEO of the United Africa Company of Nigeria. He did not belong to any party when General Ibrahim Babangida appointed him interim president in 1993. The Nigerian opposition questioned the Shonekan regime because it had not opposed Babangida’s decision to cancel Nigeria’s first democratic presidential election in almost a decade. Shonekan sought to hold new elections, but his presidency was ultimately only three months long. A coup led by Sani Abacha restored Nigeria to military power.


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