Good morning great Nigerians. You are once more very welcome to our Rebrand Champions series. On today’s episode, we shall be showcasing a statesman, a man who served Nigeria in the Nigeria army, retired as a Chief of army and on retirement, ventured into entrepreneurship. He is today one of the top ten entrepreneurs in Nigeria. Meet General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma GCON FSS psc (Rtd).

General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma was born on 9 December 1938 in Takum Taraba State (old Gongola).

His father, Kuru Danjuma was a peasant farmer who also traded in metal parts of farming implements and tools. His ancestors all settled in Takum and were highly respected members of the community.

Theophilus Danjuma attended St Bartholomew’s Primary School in Wusasa then Benue Provincial Secondary School in Katsina–Ala, there he was made captain of his school’s cricket 1st XI team. He received his Higher School Certificate in 1958 and in 1959 enrolled at the Nigerian College of Arts Science and Technology in Zaria (Ahmadu Bello University) majoring in History on a Northern Nigeria Scholarship. However, by the end of 1960, Danjuma  left university for recruitment in the Nigerian army. 

Danjuma was officially commissioned into the Nigerian Army in 1963 as second lieutenant and platoon commander in the Congo; he joined a UN Peace-keeping force in Santé, Katanga Province in Congo when he was promoted to captain three years later. In 1966, it was noted that, Captain Danjuma was involved in the Nigeria Counter-coup 1996 with the 4th Battalion in Mokola, Ibadan. 

In 1970, Danjuma attended the International Court Martial in Trinidad and Tobago as Nigeria’s representative, when he was appointed president of the tribunal in a case brought against members of a failed coup attempt in Trinidad and Tobago. Following his promotion to Colonel in 1971 he spent next two years with responsibility for court-martialling Army officers proven guilty of corruption and indiscipline. In 1975 he was promoted to Brigadier and the position of General Officer Commanding (GOC) and in the following year he became the Chief of Army Staff to the Head of State, Olusegun Obasanjo. He played a prominent role in supporting the president in resisting the Dimka Coup in 1976. Following his 19 years in the army and his subsequent retirement at 40 in 1979, General Danjuma embarked on a business career. He became a distinguished and highly successful businessman with over 35 years of experience and hard work.

COMET Shipping Agencies Nigeria Limited was established in 1984 by Danjuma with the sole purpose of acting as an agent for Nigeria American Line (NAL). Expanding tremendously in the late nineties, COMET  became one of the largest independent agents operating in Nigeria handling many types of vessels and cargo. In 2009 Comet handled over 200 vessels at the ports of Lagos, Port Harcourt, Calabar and Warri. 

SOUTH ATLANTIC PETROLEUM LIMITED (SAPETRO) is a Nigerian oil exploration and production company that was created in 1995 by General T. Y. Danjuma. The ministry of Petroleum Resources in Nigeria awarded the Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 246 to SAPETRO in February 1998. The block covers a total area of 2,590 square kilometres (1,000 sq mi). SAPETRO partnered with Total Upstream Nigeria Ltd (TUPNI) and Brasoil Oil Services Company Nigeria Ltd (Petrobras) to start prospecting on OPL246. Akpo, a condensate field was discovered in April 2000 with the drilling of the first exploration well (Akpo 1) on the block. Other discoveries made on OPL 246 include the Egina Main, Egina South, Preowei and Kuro (Kuro was suspended as a dry gas/minor oil discovery).

In 2004, SAPETRO’s subsidiary in Benin won through a competitive tender process an oil exploration contract covering 550 square kilometres offshore from the Republic of Benin. In February 2005, SAPETRO was granted Oil Mining Lease (OML) 130 and thereafter the Federal government backed in through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). In June 2006, SAPETRO divested part of its contractor rights and obligations to China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC). SAPETRO produced its “first oil” (condensate) on 4 March 2009. In December 2009 SAPETRO donated a new state of the art medical centre to the Nasarawa State University. The medical centre, to be known as South Atlantic Petroleum Medical Centre would be available to serve the University, the local and neighboring communities.  


Nigerian business tycoon, Gen. TY Danjuma, was named Board Chairman by the NatCom Development & Investment Limited “NatCom”, trading as NTEL. The announcement was made on Wednesday, July 2016 following General Danjuma’s inaugural board meeting. Ntel commenced commercial operations of its 4G/LTE-Advanced network on 08-04-16 in Lagos and Abuja. Ntel is Nigeria’s most advanced mobile 4G/LTE network providing superfast Internet Access that enables high-definition voice, data and video services. Ntel’s network is built on the 900/1800 MHz frequency bands which are the best propagation frequencies for the deployment of 4G/LTE technology.  

General Danjuma’s national honor as Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger, GCON, is the highest award given in Nigeria to a non-head of state. He also has several other national and international awards and titles, as well as honorary doctorate degrees from notable Nigerian and foreign Universities. 

General TY Danjuma, GCON (Rtd.) has been recognized as the Leadership Person of the Year for 2011 by the Leadership Board of Editors in Nigeria. In 2013, The Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji (Dr.) Shehu Idris CFR conferred the highly esteemed title of Jarmai Zazzau on General Danjuma. In 2014, General Danjuma served as a Chairman of the Victims’ Support Fund Committee supporting the victims of terror such as the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapping.

In 2015, General Danjuma was conferred with “Champion for the Conservation of Biodiversity” award by the current president Muhammadu Buhari GCFR. More recently, General Danjuma was appointed as a Chairman of the Committee to rehabilitate infrastructure and resettle Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs in the North-East sub-region of Nigeria.

Nigeria is proud of General TY Danjuma’s numerous achievements and we are honoured top celebrate him as the Rebrand Nigeria champion that he is.


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