Shehu Shagari’s tenure is a classic instance of the encounter of the unprepared with the unforeseen…….
…..He was a man with neither charisma nor definable identity. His was a face that would get lost in the crowd. But Shagari’s was a product of the peculiar dynamics of Nigerian politics. He rose so high not only because of his natural ability as a politician of means, but also because he was born in the ‘right’ corner of Nigeria. At the time he was elected president in 1979 there were many members of the Nigerian elite who believed that the leadership of the country should reside with the Hausa-Fulani oligarchy. But Shagari’s needed more than the mere accident of birth to win the number one spot. He was a seasoned political strategist who oversees his opponents by guided simplicity and measured eloquence of silence. He was a clever fox who survived in the gathering of impatient lions….

Quoted from House of War by Dare Babarinsa pages 166-167. Spectrum books 2003.