|  Share | Cite

Ahmadou Ahidjo

Ahidjo, Ahmadou (ämäˈdō ähēˈjŏ) [key], 1924–89, president of Cameroon (1960–82). A Muslim Fulani chief's son, he served with the French during World War II. Entering politics in the French Cameroons, he became vice premier (1957) and premier (1958) of the territory. With the Cameroon Republic's independence (1960), he was elected its first president. He also became president of the Mouvement d'Union Camerounaise, which favored continued strong ties with France. He persuaded the British-administered Southern Cameroons to unite (1961) with the Cameroon Republic in the Federal Republic of Cameroon. He was reelected president in 1965, 1970, 1975, and 1980 as the candidate of the country's sole political party. In 1972 he secured adoption of a new unitary constitution, creating the United Republic of Cameroon, although unitary government was unpopular. Retiring in 1982, he clashed with successor Paul Biya, and after an abortive coup he was convicted in absentia. He lived in France and Senegal until his death.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Ahmadou Ahidjo from Infoplease:

  • Ahidjo: meaning and definitions - Ahidjo: Definition and Pronunciation
  • Paul Biya - Biya, Paul Biya, Paul , 1933–, Cameroonian political leader. Educated in Cameroon and France, ...
  • Cameroon - Information on Cameroon — map of Cameroon, flag of Cameroon, geography, history, politics, government, economy, population, culture, religion, languages, largest cities
  • Cameroon, country: History - History Early History to Independence Throughout history the region witnessed numerous invasions ...
  • Africa: Rulers - Africa: Rulers Congo: Rulers Theophile Theodore Joseph Antoine Baron Wahis, governor-general of the ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: African History: Biographies