Adewale Ademoyega

Adewale Ademoyega

Adewale Ademoyega was one of the five rebellious majors who led the 1966 coup that ended the first Nigerian civilian government. He was born in Ode Remo in present day Ogun State in southwestern Nigeria. He died at the age of 72 on February 21, 2007. He had his wife and three children.[1]



Adewale earned a degree in history from the University of London. He was one of the first graduates that enrolled as an officer in the Nigerian Army along with Lieutenant Colonels Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu and Victor Banjo, and Majors Olufemi Olutoye, Adewale Ademoyega, Emmanuel Ifeajuna, and Oluwole Rotimi in the 1966 Nigerian army. Adewale Ademoyega was the last graduate to be commissioned directly into the Nigerian Army Infantry.

The Biafra War

During the Biafran civil war, Adewale fought in the "Nigerian Liberation Army", a part of the Biafran army led by Lieutenant Colonel Banjo.

Major Ademoyega was released by Major Chukwuma, a participant in the coup d'état of April 1966[2] on August 13, 1966. He then formed the 19th Battalion and subsequently took over for Major Ifeajuana, who also helped with the 1966 coup as the chief of staff of the Liberation Army.

Ademoyega was later detained after the war for his participation as part as the Liberation Army but was released along with twenty others during the 1974 Independence Day amnesty.

Why We Struck

Major Adewale Ademoyega's book about the abortive coup d'état is regarded as one of the most authoritative regarding the first Nigerian coup.[3][4]


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  3. ^ Why We Struck Adewale Ademoyega Published in 1981, Evans Brothers (Ibadan, Nigeria)
  4. ^ My command;An account of the Nigerian Civil War 1967-1970 Heinemann 1980