Abba Kyari (17 November 1938 – 17 April 2020) was a Nigerian politician who served as Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari.
Abba Kyari, who had underlying health problems, including diabetes, was one of the high-ranking politicians in Nigeria, one of the most powerful men in the country and the top official aide to the President.
He was said to have contracted the COVID-19 while on an official trip to Germany in March. He was confirmed to have contracted the virus on March 23, though it was revealed March 30. It was announced that he died of COVID-19 on Friday 17th April 2020.
Abba Kyari, a Kanuri from Borno state, in 1980 graduated with a degree’s degree in sociology from the University of Warwick and received a bachelor’s degree in law from the University of Cambridge.
In 1983, he was called to the Nigerian Bar after attending the Nigerian Law School. In 1984, he obtained a master’s degree in law from the University of Cambridge.
He later attended the International Institute for Management in Lausanne, Switzerland and participated in the Program for Management Development at the Harvard Business School, in 1992 and 1994, respectively.
Kyari worked for the law firm Fani-Kayode and Sowemimo for some time after his return to Nigeria. From 1988 to 1990, he was Editor with the New Africa Holdings Limited Kaduna. In 1990, he served as a Commissioner for Forestry and Animal Resources in Borno State.
From 1990 to 1995, Kyari was the secretary to the board of African International Bank Limited, a subsidiary of Bank of Credit and Commerce International.
Kyari was an executive director in charge of management services at the United Bank for Africa and was later appointed the Chief Executive Officer. In 2002, he was appointed a board director of Unilever Nigeria, and later served on the board of Exxon Mobil Nigeria.
Kyari was an influential figure within the Buhari administration. During the administration’s first term, he worked mainly behind the scenes to implement the president’s agenda.
In 2019 with Buhari’s re-election for a second term, he ordered his cabinet to channel all requests through Kyari’s office. Kyari died in a Lagos hospital on 17 April 2020,he died from complications related to COVID-19.
Source – Wikipedia