Jean-Jacques Dessalines was an important figure and leader of the Haitian Revolution. He went on to rule an independent Haiti, which became the first country to abolish slavery permanently. Considered one of Haiti's founding fathers, Dessalines reigned as the emperor of Haiti from 1804 until his murder in 1806. Today, he is regarded as an icon of Haitian nationalism.
Better known as the father of renowned golfer Tiger Woods, Earl Woods had initially been a U.S. Army lieutenant colonel. He excelled in baseball in college and learned to play golf much later, at 42. Addicted to the sport, he taught it to his son, who later became a golf legend.
Muhammadu Buhari is a Nigerian politician and the current president of Nigeria. Since becoming the president, Buhari has introduced many social welfare programs that address unemployment and poverty. The programs were mainly introduced to help increase economic development in the country.
Samuel Doe led a violent coup against Liberian president William Tolbert, executing him. Doe then led as the country’s military leader and later became its president. He was eventually brutally tortured and killed by INPFL Prince Y. Johnson’s men, and the killing was taped and showcased in news reports.
An Oxford graduate, Nigerian military leader and politician C. Odumegwu Ojukwu started his career as an administrative officer. He later reigned at the governor of the Eastern Region in Nigeria and became the 1st president of Biafra. He won many accolades, including the honorary title of the Ikemba of Nnewi.
People have often compared Jean-Bédel Bokassa to the tyrannical Roman emperor Nero. The Central African military leader who later took over as the president and emperor of Central Africa, had opened the country to foreign investors, while he allegedly fed his rivals to crocodiles and lions in his personal zoo.
Then first Black to have graduated from West Point’s Military Academy, Henry Ossian Flipper was born to slave parents. He also became the first African-American to command US Army troops. He was dismissed unjustly on embezzlement charges and later worked as a civil engineer. His name was cleared posthumously.
Devon Harris is a Jamaican former military officer and bobsledder. A founding member of the national bobsled team that participated in the 1988 Winter Olympics, Harris went on to represent his country in the 1992 and 1998 Olympics. Also a humanitarian, Harris is credited with founding the Keep on Pushing Foundation in 2006, which supports children's education in disadvantaged communities.
Former Nigerian Chief of Naval Staff Allison Amaechina Madueke was fired after he supported the release of democratically elected civilian president Moshood Abiola who was imprisoned after General Sani Abacha’s coup. Post-retirement, he served on the boards of enterprises such as Regalia Nigeria Ltd. and Excel E & P.
A Kenya Airforce Senior Private, Hezekiah Ochuka arranged a coup against Kenyan president Daniel arap Moi. However, he could rule only for 6 hours, as he fled to Tanzania when he realized the coup was about to fail. He was later extradited to Kenya and hanged.
Ethiopian army commander, Haile Selassie Gugsa, a member of Imperial family from Tigray, was son-in-law of Emperor of Ethiopia Haile Selassie. Gugsa gained notoriety for betraying the Emperor during Second Italo-Ethiopian War and announcing his submission to Italian rule. He was eventually tried, declared a fascist collaborator and traitor, and placed under house-arrest, and later at Ambo for 28 years.