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Unilag, Uniben Others Emerge Centres Of Excellence In Procurement Violence Is Not The Solution: It's The Problem When Silence Is Not Golden: The Tragic Story Of Major Idowu Bamidele
When Silence Is Not Golden: The Tragic Story Of Major Idowu Bamidele by Goodboy(m): Fri 26, November, 2021

On March 5, 1986 Major Daniel Idowu Bamidele, General Mamman Vatsa and 9 other officers were executed by firing squad after the military pronounced them guilty of plotting a coup.

But Major Daniel Idowu Bamidele's only sin was that he knew about the coup and he didn't tell anyone or report to the government. But is he to be blamed?

His intentional silence proved to be the right thing, because in 1983 he reported a coup plot he was privy of, but he didn't know that he reported to the brain behind coup— his report blew back on him.

In 1983, Major Bamidele heard rumour of a coup plot against Shehu Shagari's government, and he immediately reported to his boss, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (current president of Nigeria). What he didn't know was that Buhari is the master of the coup.

As a decoy and as a way of making sure their coup was successful, the coup plotters pinned the plot on Major Bamidele. They claimed he was trying to plot a coup so he was arrested and imprisoned. Then the actual plotters carried on with their plans and they successfully toppled the administration of Shehu Shagari.

Bamidele was released on November 25 1983 and he received double shocks and surprises when his boss Buhari emerged as Head of State less than a month after Bamidele's release from prison.

Fast forward to 1986, Bamidele again overhears another conversation between officers criticizing the Babangida régime and saying things that suggest a coup is imminent. Since they say experience is the best teacher and silence is golden, Bamidele chose not to disclose what heard to anyone, but that was his biggest, costliest mistake.


He was arrested, tried by military tribunal, and executed by firing squad along with the alleged coup plotters.

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