The first civilian governor of old Borno State, Alhaji Mohammed Goni, has died at the age of 78 from an undisclosed illness.
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A source who chose not to be mentioned confirmed that Goni died on Wednesday evening from an ailment that he declined to mention.
The late Goni was elected as the first civilian governor of the former Borno State on the platform of the Great Nigeria Peoples Party, GNPP, in 1979 and was in office from October 1979 to September 1983.
The deceased, it was learnt, worked with the Nigerian National Supply Company in 1977, resigning in April 1979, to participate in politics ahead of the Second Republic.
While in office as the Governor of the northern state, it was gathered that he was part of the Progressives Coalition led by the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
The late politician was said to have founded the Borno Radio Television, BRTV, as a tool to counter the propaganda of the Federal Government-owned media at that time.
Findings also revealed that Goni, before the 1983 elections, decamped to the Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, running unsuccessfully for reelection against the Nigerian People’s Party, NPP, candidate, Sheikh Jarma.
Contesting his loss at the tribunal, the Supreme Court ruled that it condemned cross-carpeting by political officeholders.
In the meantime, Goni contested the April 2003 general elections on the United Nigeria People’s Party, UNPP, platform as vice-presidential candidate with former Anambra State governor, Chief Jim Nwobodo, as the presidential candidate and lost
Meanwhile, in January 2011 he was elected by Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, delegate in Borno State and as its governorship candidate in the April 2011 elections which he also lost.
Born in Kareto, Mobbar local government area of Borno State in 1942, the late Goni attended Maiduguri Middle School (1953–55), Borno Provincial Secondary School (1956–61), Provincial Secondary School, Kano (1962-63) and the Institute of Administration, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria (1964–87), where he bagged a BA (Administration), specialising in international affairs.