Famous Nigerian Men

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Find out more about the greatest Nigerian Men, including Chinua Achebe, Muhammadu Buhari, Uzodinma Iweala, Wole Soyinka and Olusegun Obasanjo
Vote for Your Favourite Nigerian Men
 1 
Israel Adesanya
(Mixed martial artist)
Israel Adesanya
73
Birthdate: July 22, 1989
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Lagos, Nigeria

Israel Adesanya is a Nigerian-born New Zealand kickboxer, mixed martial artist, and former boxer. Considered one of the best strikers in MMA, Adesanya has won multiple championships and is the current UFC Middleweight Champion. In 2019, Israel Adesanya was named New Zealand Sportsman of the Year at the Halberg Awards.

 2 
Kamaru Usman
(Mixed martial artist)
Kamaru Usman
30
Birthdate: May 11, 1987
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Auchi, Nigeria
 3 
Chinua Achebe
(Nigerian novelist)
Chinua Achebe
12
Birthdate: November 16, 1930
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Ogidi, Nigeria Protectorate
Died: March 21, 2013

Chinua Achebe was a Nigerian poet, novelist, professor, and critic. Often described as Africa's greatest storyteller, Achebe is widely regarded as the father of modern African writing. He was the recipient of several awards and honors, including the Man Booker International Prize 2007. His novel Things Fall Apart is one of the most read books in Africa.

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 4 
Fela Kuti
(Multi-Instrumentalist & the Creator of ‘Afro-beat’, a Genre that Fuses West African Music with American Funk & Jazz)
Fela Kuti
14
Birthdate: October 15, 1938
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Abeokuta, Nigeria
Died: August 2, 1997
Political activist and Afrobeat inventor Fela Kuti initially performed with his band Koola Lobitos and later renamed it Nigeria '70. He was inspired by the Black Power movement, which also gradually transformed his musical style. He married 27 women in 1978, to mark the anniversary of the Kalakuta Republic attack.
 5 
Burna Boy
(Singer)
Burna Boy
9
Birthdate: July 2, 1991
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria
 6 
Davido
(Singer-Songwriter)
Davido
31
Birthdate: November 21, 1992
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
American-born Nigerian artist David Adedeji Adeleke, better known as Davido, studied business before venturing into music. He soared to fame with his hit tracks Dami Duro and If. He owns a record label, too. His song Fall was the longest-charting Nigerian pop track in the history of Billboard.
 7 
Keiynan Lonsdale
8
Birthdate: December 19, 1991
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Australian actor, dancer and singer-songwriter Keiynan Lonsdale is best-known for playing Wally West/Kid Flash in The CW series The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow. Other on-screen portrayals of Lonsdale includes Oliver Lloyd in the series Dance Academy and Uriah Pedrad in film The Divergent Series: Insurgent. He has also released the studio-album Rainbow Boy and worked as an MTV VJ.  

 8 
Jay-Jay Okocha
(Footballer)
Jay-Jay Okocha
7
Birthdate: August 14, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Enugu, Nigeria
 9 
Kelechi Iheanacho
(Nigerian footballer)
Kelechi Iheanacho
8
Birthdate: October 3, 1996
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Imo, Nigeria
 10 
Ime Udoka
(Former Professional Basketball Player and Head Coach of the 'Boston Celtics')
Ime Udoka
10
Birthdate: August 9, 1977
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Portland, Oregon, United States
Nigerian-American NBA player Ime Udoka is known for his 7-year stint as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs. His association with experts such as coach Gregg Popovich has enriched his career and raised hopes that he will soon be hired as a head coach by a major team.
 11 
Osita Iheme
6
Birthdate: February 20, 1982
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Abia State
 12 
T. B. Joshua
(Televangelist, Faith Healer)
T. B. Joshua
32
Birthdate: June 12, 1963
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Arigidi, Nigeria
Died: June 5, 2021

Nigerian charismatic pastor, televangelist, and philanthropist T. B. Joshua is the founder of The Synagogue, Church of All Nations (SCOAN). He is extremely popular across Africa and Latin America, and his YouTube channel, Emmanuel TV, has over a million subscribers. He is considered one of the most influential people from Africa and is the recipient of several awards. 

 13 
Wizkid
(Singer-songwriter)
Wizkid
22
Birthdate: July 16, 1990
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Surulere, Lagos

Nigerian singer Wizkid soared to fame with chart-busting tracks such as Holla at Your Boy. A performer who has revolutionized the Afrobeats genre, Wizkid supported Nigeria’s End SARS protests against police brutality, on social media. In 2011, he was part of a paternity scandal but denied having fathered a child.

 14 
John Obi Mikel
(Nigerian footballer)
John Obi Mikel
3
Birthdate: April 22, 1987
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Jos, Nigeria
 15 
Wole Soyinka
(Author, Poet, Playwright)
Wole Soyinka
7
Birthdate: July 13, 1934
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Abeokuta

Wole Soyinka is a Nigerian playwright, poet, and essayist. In 1986, he became the first sub-Saharan African to be honored with the Nobel Prize in Literature. As a young man, he worked with the Royal Court Theatre in London. In Nigeria, he was actively involved in the country’s freedom struggle. He has taught at various international universities.

 16 
Nwankwo Kanu
(Footballer)
Nwankwo Kanu
6
Birthdate: August 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Owerri
 17 
Olusegun Obasanjo
(Former President of Nigeria)
Olusegun Obasanjo
3
Birthdate: March 5, 1937
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Abeokuta, British Nigeria
Initially a teacher, Olusegun Obasanjo had joined the army as he could not afford college. The People’s Democratic Party leader became the military ruler of Nigeria in 1976 but later handed over his powers to a democratic government. He also became the president 2 decades later. 
 18 
Obafemi Martins
(Footballer)
Obafemi Martins
4
Birthdate: October 28, 1984
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Lagos
 19 
Akbar Gbaja-Biamila
(American football player)
Akbar Gbaja-Biamila
1
Birthdate: May 6, 1979
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
 20 
Michael Boulos
(Tiffany Trump’s Boyfriend)
Michael Boulos
18
Birthplace: Lagos
Michael Boulos has mostly been in the news for dating Donald Trump’s younger daughter, Tiffany Trump. The Lebanese-French heir of businessman Massad Boulos is now the associate director of his Nigeria-based family business, SCOA Nigeria; the director of Fadoul Group; and the business development manager of Royalton Investment
 21 
Sani Abacha
(Nigerian General Who Ruled as the 10th Head of State of Nigeria)
Sani Abacha
2
Birthdate: September 20, 1943
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kano, Nigeria
Died: June 8, 1998
Sani Abacha was a Nigerian general best remembered for his rule as the tenth Head of State of Nigeria from 17 November 1993 until his death on 8 June 1998. An influential military leader, Sani Abacha also served as the Minister of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff, and Chief of Army Staff between 1985 and 1993.
 22 
Peter Odemwingie
(Retired Football player)
Peter Odemwingie
0
Birthdate: July 15, 1981
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tashkent, Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic Uzbek SSR, Soviet Union
 23 
Ibrahim Babangida
(Eighth President of Nigeria)
Ibrahim Babangida
1
Birthdate: August 17, 1941
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Minna, Nigeria
Ibrahim Babangida is a Nigerian former politician and Army general. He is best known for his service as the eighth President of Nigeria from 1985 to 1993. An influential politician, Ibrahim Babangida also served as the Chief of Army Staff from 1 January 1984 to 26 August 1985.
 24 
Benjamin Nnamdi Azikiwe
(First President of Nigeria)
Benjamin Nnamdi Azikiwe
4
Birthdate: November 16, 1904
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Zungeru, Nigeria
Died: May 11, 1996

Benjamin Nnamdi Azikiwe was a Nigerian political leader and statesman. From 1963 to 1966, Azikiwe served as the first president of Nigeria. Often referred to as the Father of Nigerian Nationalism, Benjamin Nnamdi Azikiwe played an important role in Nigeria's struggle for independence. He is also credited with establishing the University of Nigeria (UNN).

 25 
Chinedu Ikedieze
(Nigerian actor)
Chinedu Ikedieze
2
Birthdate: December 12, 1977
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Bende, Abia
 26 
Atiku Abubakar
(Vice President of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007)
Atiku Abubakar
2
Birthdate: November 25, 1946
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Adamawa State
Atiku Abubakar is a Nigerian businessman and politician. He is best known for his service as the Vice President of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007. An influential political leader, Atiku Abubakar has unsuccessfully contested for the Office of President of Nigeria on multiple occasions. In 2022, he was chosen to represent the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2023 presidential election.
 27 
Henry Onyekuru
(Nigerian footballer)
Henry Onyekuru
2
Birthdate: June 5, 1997
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Onitsha
 28 
Bola Tinubu
(Nigerian Politician Who Served as the Governor of Lagos State from 1999 to 2007)
Bola Tinubu
6
Birthdate: March 29, 1952
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lagos State
Bola Tinubu is a Nigerian politician and accountant. He is best known for his service as the Governor of Lagos State from 1999 to 2007. He also served as the Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from 5 December 1992 to 17 November 1993. In 2022, Tinubu was chosen to represent All Progressives Congress in the 2023 presidential election.
 29 
Yakubu Gowon
(Head of State of Nigeria from 1966 to 1975)
Yakubu Gowon
4
Birthdate: October 19, 1934
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kanke
Yakubu Gowon is a Nigerian former Army general and military leader. In 1966, he served as the Chief of Army Staff. From 1966 to 1975, he served as the Federal Commissioner of Defence. An important political leader, Yakubu Gowon also served as the Head of State of Nigeria from 1 August 1966 to 29 July 1975.
 30 
Enoch Adeboye
6
Birthdate: March 2, 1942
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Ifewara, Osun State, Nigeria

Better known as Daddy Go, Nigerian pastor Enoch Adeboye serves the Redeemed Christian Church of God and has millions of followers. However, the media has often called out his sexist attitude, reflected in his social-media posts, one of which advised men to marry only women who could cook.

 31 
Ken Saro-Wiwa
(Nigerian Writer & Environmental Activist Who Led Nonviolent Campaigns Against Environmental Degradation)
Ken Saro-Wiwa
3
Birthdate: October 10, 1941
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bori, Nigeria
Died: November 10, 1995
Ken Saro-Wiwa was a Nigerian writer, environmental activist, and television producer. He is best remembered for leading nonviolent campaigns against environmental degradation of Ogoniland, home to the Ogoni people of Nigeria. Ken Saro-Wiwa's life and career inspired a couple of novels, namely The Other Side of Truth and Eclipse.  
 32 
Rick Famuyiwa
(Film Director)
Rick Famuyiwa
2
Birthdate: June 18, 1973
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Laie, Hawaii, United States

Rick Famuyiwa is a Nigerian-American filmmaker and screenwriter. Some of his best-known works include the 1999 coming-of-age film, The Wood, 2002 romantic comedy movie, Brown Sugar, and 2015 coming-of-age film, Dope. Over the years, Famuyiwa has been vocal about the issues faced by African-Americans in the film industry and works hard to resolve such issues.

 33 
Osi Umenyiora
(Former American Football Defensive End)
Osi Umenyiora
3
Birthdate: November 16, 1981
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England, UK
London-born Nigerian NFL star Osi Umenyiora impressed his fans throughout his 9-year stint with the New York Giants. The two-time Super Bowl champion ended his career with the Atlanta Falcons. He is now an award-winning sports pundit and is known for his expert sportscasting on BBC Sport.
 34 
Usman dan Fodio
(Fulani Scholar, Sunni Islamic Teacher, Revolutionary, and Founder and First Caliph of Sokoto Caliphate )
Usman dan Fodio
2
Birthdate: December 15, 1754
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Gobir, Nigeria
Died: April 20, 1817
 35 
Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola
(Nigerian Politician, Businessman, and Publisher)
Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola
3
Birthdate: August 24, 1937
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Abeokuta, Nigeria
Died: July 7, 1998
Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola was a Nigerian politician, businessman, and publisher. Nicknamed the President Who Never Ruled, Abiola took part in the presidential elections in 1993. Unfortunately, the results of the election were annulled by Ibrahim Babangida, claiming that the election was corrupt and unfair. By the time of his demise, Abiola had become a symbol of democracy.
 36 
Muhammadu Buhari
(7th and 15th President of Nigeria)
Muhammadu Buhari
16
Birthdate: December 17, 1942
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Daura, Nigeria

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.

 37 
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
(Spiritual Leader and Former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria)
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
0
Birthdate: July 31, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kano
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi is a Nigerian spiritual leader and banker. He served as the Emir of Kano from 8 June 2014 to 9 March 2020. During his reign as Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi advocated cultural reform in Northern Nigeria. From 2009 to 2014, he also served as the Central Bank of Nigeria's governor.
 38 
Shola Ameobi
(Nigerian Former Professional Footballer Who Played as a 'Striker')
Shola Ameobi
2
Birthdate: October 12, 1981
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Zaria, Nigeria

Nigerian former footballer Shola Ameobi is remembered for his long stint with English football club Newcastle United. He later also represented other clubs such as Notts County. Son of a pastor, he is quite religious and is associated with charitable organizations that work for religious freedom.

 39 
Samuel Peter
0
Birthdate: September 6, 1980
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Akwa Ibom, Nigeria
 40 
Bukola Saraki
(Nigerian Politician Who Served as the President of Nigerian Senate from 2015 to 2019)
Bukola Saraki
0
Birthdate: December 19, 1962
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Bukola Saraki is a Nigerian politician best known for his service as the President of the Nigerian Senate from 9 June 2015 to 11 June 2019. He also served as the Governor of Kwara State from 2003 to 2011 and as the Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from 2011 to 2019.
 41 
Efe Ajagba
(Boxer)
Efe Ajagba
0
Birthdate: April 22, 1994
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ughelli, Nigeria
 42 
Dr. Alban
(Recording artist and producer with his own record label, Dr. Records)
Dr. Alban
3
Birthdate: August 26, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Oguta, Nigeria
 43 
Umaru Musa Yar'Adua
( Nigerian Politician Who Served as the 13th President of the Country )
Umaru Musa Yar'Adua
2
Birthdate: August 16, 1951
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Katsina, Nigeria
Died: May 5, 2010
 44 
Korede Bello
(Singer-Songwriter)
Korede Bello
18
Birthdate: February 29, 1996
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Lagos State

Nigerian singer Korede Bello was just 7 when he had started performing, using the pseudonym African Prince. His single Godwin later catapulted him to fame. Bello also boasts of a mass communication degree and has been associated with philanthropic activities such as cancer awareness programs.

 45 
Taribo West
(Association football player)
Taribo West
0
Birthdate: March 26, 1974
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Port Harcourt, Nigeria
 46 
C. Odumegwu Ojukwu
(Nigerian Military Leader and Politician Who Ruled as the 1st president of Biafra)
C. Odumegwu Ojukwu
0
Birthdate: November 4, 1933
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Zungeru, Nigeria
Died: November 26, 2011

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.

 47 
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa
(The First and Only Prime Minister of Nigeria Post Independence of the Country)
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa
2
Birthdate: 1912
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Bauchi, Nigeria
Died: January 15, 1966
 48 
Isaac Success
(Nigerian footballer)
Isaac Success
2
Birthdate: January 7, 1996
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Benin City, Nigeria
 49 
Shehu Shagari
(The First Nigerian President to be Democratically Elected)
Shehu Shagari
1
Birthdate: February 25, 1925
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Shagari, Nigeria
Died: December 28, 2018

The great-grandson of a leader who founded his village, Nigerian politician Shehu Shagari served as the 6th president and the 1st democratically elected president of Nigeria. Initially a teacher, he joined politics as the secretary of the Northern People's Congress. He strengthened the economy of Nigeria and deported countless West African migrants.

 50 
Rashidi Yekini
(Footballer)
Rashidi Yekini
1
Birthdate: October 23, 1963
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kaduna, Nigeria
Died: May 4, 2012