ABOUT THIS SITE


Three reasons underlie the creation of this website, the Ibbpresidentiallibrary.org: First, as a public service, a way of further enriching the various reflections and interpretations of the policies of the military administration of General Ibrahim Babangida. Second, because the man was last in public office about 23 years ago and his most vociferous critics and commentators are either in their late twenties or early thirties and may not have experienced first-hand, the Nigeria he inherited in August 1985, when he became President and the high points of his contributions as a leader. It is dangerous to leave national discourse of a historical nature in the hands of people with inherited prejudices and second-hand wisdom. Third, assessments of his eight year tenure as President of this country between 1985-1993 need to be grounded in fact, not partisan fiction and fashionable impressions.

To say that Babangida is easily the most documented past Nigerian leader, weighing in almost equally in both positive and negative directions would be an over exaggeration. Passionately loved and viciously despised, almost in equal measure, but never comfortable to ignore. Equally over documented is the controversial essence of the man himself, his political method and indeed his overall relationship with the various realities that he has had to deal with in the course of an eventful life.

The fact however, regrettably, remains that only few, very few Nigerians really understand the man himself, the currents of his times and ideas, their relationship to the wider national and international community, and how they were shaped by historical and cultural factors.

Again, there is no other regime in Nigerian history, which has mobilized the vast intellectual energy of a generation of writers, journalists and intellectuals both within Nigeria and outside, remotely comparable with that of Babangida. They ranged widely from fulsome praise to outraged contempt. This intellectual energy has created in the process, a vast and rich literature, which at present remains undocumented.

It is however pertinent to emphasise that, the purpose of this Site is neither to rehash Babangida’s numerous reform initiatives, initiatives that others have either built upon, out rightly obliterated, mischievously disfigured or cleverly stolen and renamed or brazenly appropriated or misappropriated nor to enumerate the various landmark achievements of his administration.

The strategic significance of the site is that it provides a critical but scientific and objective analysis of events, issues and problems, which characterised the Babangida regime by putting them in a proper historical and intellectual perspective. In addition, it provides a first-hand source and reference materials – a central portal for manuscripts, files, reports, transcripts, research materials, video and audio recordings of proceedings of meetings, etc, and news related to the Presidency of General Babangida and his regime – for researchers and scholars to rely upon to write about the underlying principles and structural forms of the life of General Babangida’s administration, and to generate theoretical formulations in areas of political, social and economic problems.

In the long term, the website hopes to be the richest online resource for information on the institution of the Nigerian presidency, including in-depth reference essays and rich archival material, including rare audio and video recordings of events and speeches of General Ibrahim Babangida.