Major General Farouk Yahaya: Pieces of Information I Bet You Didn’t Know About The New Chief of Army Staff

On May 27 2021, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Major General Farouk Yahaya as the new Chief of Army Staff. 

The announcement was made barely a week after the death and burial of his predecessor, Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru, who died in a military plane crash near the Kaduna International Airport on May 21, 2021, alongside 10 other officers as they were on an official trip from Abuja to Kaduna.

Prior to his announcement as the new COAS, not many Nigerians can boldly say that they know him or have information about him.

So below are a few things every Nigerian should know about the COAS.

Major General Farouk is 55 years old, he was born on January 5, 1966 in Sifawa, present day Bodinga Local Government Area of Sokoto state. 

On 27th September 1985, he began his cadet training after he gained admission into the Nigerian Defence Academy as a member of Regular Course 37. In 1990, he graduated and was commissioned into the Nigerian Army Infantry Corps on September 22, 1990.

In his quest to serve his country, he got promoted to different ranks in the Nigerian Army. The ranks are;

Lieutenant ( 27th September 1990)

Captain (27th September 1994)

Major (27th September 1998)

Lieutenant Colonel (27th September 2003)

Colonel (27th September 2008)

Brigadier General (27th September 2013)

Major General (27th September 2017)

Some of Yahaya’s previous positions within the army are: Garrison Commander, Guards Brigade, Directing Staff at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College (AFCSC), Deputy Director Army Headquarters Department of Military Secretary, Deputy Director Army Research and Development and the Chief of Staff, Principal General Staff Officer to the Honourable Minister of Defence, Ministry of Defence, Headquarters Joint Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield.

He also served as the Commander Headquarters 4 Brigade and 29 Task Force Brigade (Operation Zaman Lafiya). He was also Director Manpower at the Army Headquarters, Military Secretary, Army Headquarters, He was the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 1 Division of the Nigerian Army before he handed over to Major General Usman Mohammed in April 2020.

He was also the Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) in Maiduguri, Borno State capital. 

In 2019, Yahaya led the Operation CLEAN SWEEP, an operation to flush out bandits in Kuduru forest, Birnin Gwari Local Government Area, where he noted that the operation actually saw the destruction of bandit camps but five soldiers sustained injuries.

Until his appointment as Chief of Army Staff, he was the Commander, Headquarters Theatre Commander Operation HADIN KAI, an operation put together to counter terrorism and insurgency in the restive northeast region of Nigeria.

Farouk is the third Chief of Army to be appointed by President Buhari ever since his administration began. In July 2015, he appointed Major-General Tukur Buratai who later resigned in January 2021. Buratai was succeeded by the late Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru after his appointment  in January 2021 till his death on May 21, 2021.  

He speaks and writes four languages, English, Hausa, Arabic and Spanish. He is happily married with four children.

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