Meet Donaldson Oladipo Diya, who served as the de facto Vice President of Nigeria under military head of state General Sani Abacha from 1994 until his arrest in 1997 for treason.
He was a Nigerian general who held important positions in the military. Diya also served as Chief of Defence Staff and was the Military Governor of Ogun State from January 1984 to August 1985.
Oladipo Diya Biography
Diya was the military Governor of Ogun State from January 1984 to August 1985. He was born on April 3, 1944, in Odogbolu, Nigeria, and died on March 26, 2023, at the age of 78. Diya was a Lieutenant General in the Nigerian Army and fought in the Nigerian Civil War.
His wife, Deborah Folashade Diya, passed away in 2020. Oladipo Diya was a Nigerian military officer who held important positions in the military. He served as the Chief of General Staff (or de facto Vice President) and the Chief of Defence Staff under military head of state General Sani Abacha from 1993 to 1997.
Early Life | Education
Donaldson Oladipo Diya was born on April 3, 1944, in Odogbolu, Nigeria. He attended Methodist Primary School in Lagos and Odogbolu Grammar School for his education.
After being released from prison, General Diya did not cooperate with investigations into his activities as vice president.
He focused on regaining his properties that were seized by the government when he was arrested. General Diya did not explain how he bought these properties with his salary as a lieutenant general.
On May 18, 2020, General Diya’s second wife, Folashade Diya, passed away a few days before her 65th birthday. She died from complications related to COVID-19, and General Diya’s first wife also tested positive for the virus.
Career in Military
Oladipo Diya was a Nigerian soldier who fought in the Nigerian Civil War. He attended military schools and also studied law at university. He served as a military governor and held various command positions.
In 1993, he was appointed as Chief of the General Staff, which made him the de facto Vice President of Nigeria during the military government of Sani Abacha. However, he was later arrested for treason in 1997. His Principal Staff Officer during this time was Bode George.
In 1997, Oladipo Diya, a Nigerian Lieutenant General, and other dissident soldiers were accused of planning to overthrow the Nigerian military regime led by Sani Abacha.
Diya was arrested and later sentenced to death by a military tribunal. He claimed that he was entrapped by another officer close to Abacha, Gen. Musa Bamaiyi. The trial was closed to the public due to the seriousness of the charge.
The head of the tribunal said Diya had to prove that he was not part of the plot. The secrecy surrounding the trial was criticized by the South African government. The death sentence was later commuted, and Diya was released but was stripped of his rank and barred from using his military title.
1997 Coup Plot
In 1997, Oladipo Diya and some other soldiers were accused of planning to overthrow the Nigerian government led by Sani Abacha. The alleged coup was discovered by loyalists to Abacha, and Diya and his fellow soldiers were arrested and imprisoned.
Diya was sentenced to death by a military tribunal, but was later pardoned by Abacha’s successor, Abdusalami Abubakar, after Abacha’s death. 
Many people believed that the alleged coup was actually a plot by Abacha to get rid of Diya, who was becoming popular among the opposition for his moderate views.
Diya and others arrested were mostly from the Yoruba ethnic group in the southwest region of Nigeria, which was already facing discontent with the government. Some saw this as a provocation in a country with regional rivalries.
State of Origin | Hometown
Oladipo Diya was born in Odogbolu, Ogun State, Nigeria, on April 3, 1944.  So, Ogun State is his home state, and Odogbolu is his hometown. There is no information available about his children or relatives on the internet.
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