Some African leaders have committed outrageous and outright criminal acts during their reign. Despite being warlords, they ascended the throne with bizarre titles. Overview of top 5 famous African warlords
Some African leaders who were elected or came to power after a coup d’état have given themselves titles to show their strength. Unlike the Queen of England who ascended to the throne with the official title, “Her Majesty Elizabeth II, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of her other realms and territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith”.
The list of famous African warlords with bizarre titles
5. Yahya Jammeh
Yahya Jammeh or Yahya Abdul-Aziz Jemus Junkung Jammeh was the President of The Gambia from 1996 to 2017. He was furthermore a politician and a military officer.
In 1994, Jammeh and four army officers formed a coup against Dawda Jawara. Jammeh’s presidency has been marred by students’ massacres, unfair imprisonments, disappearances, embezzlement, and witch hunts.
Claiming to be a medical professional, Jammeh claimed to have cures for HIV/AIDS, Asthma, high blood pressure, and infertility.
In a statement released on June 16, 2015, by the State House in The Gambia, Jammeh noted that he was called “His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Doctor Yahya Abdul-Aziz Awal Jemus Junkung Jammeh Naasiru Deen Babili Mansa.”
In 2014, he stopped using Babili Mansa, a Mandingo name meaning “builder of bridges” or “conqueror of rivers.”
4. Robert Mugabe
Before Africa’s oldest and most senior leader was ousted from office by the military in 2017, Robert Gabriel Mugabe called himself: “His Excellency, the President, Robert Gabriel Mugabe and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Force, Protector of War Veterans, First Secretary of the Party and Chancellor of State Universities.”
He was also called “Supreme Chief, the first citizen of the nation, honorary black belt, and professor of diplomacy.”
3. Joseph Mobutu
The former military leader who became president of Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo, changed his name in order to “Africanise” himself and his state.
He became Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu Waza Banga, which means “The warrior who goes from conquest to conquest leaving fire in his wake”.
2. Muammar Gaddafi
Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, the ousted leader of Libya, ruled the North African country from 1969 to 1977 and proclaimed himself revolutionary president of the Libyan Arab Republic.
The title changed between 1977 and 2011 when he was killed after an uprising. He was designated “Guide of the Great Revolution of September 1 of the Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, fraternal leader and guide of the revolution.”
1. Idi Amin
Idi Amin was President of Uganda from 1971 to 1979. Prior to becoming President, Amin was a member of the King’s African Rifles, a subset of the British Colonial Army. In 1971, Amin overthrew the regime of Uganda’s second president, Milton Obote.
During his administration, Uganda’s political climate was marked by corruption, persecution, violence, murder, a failing economy, and misuse of public funds.
In 1971, after overthrowing the previous government, Amin assumed the titles of Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Chief of Land Staff, and Chief of Air Staff. In 1977, after the severed British ties with Uganda, Amin declared that he had defeated the British and awarded himself the title of Conqueror of the British Empire.
His official title was: “His Excellency, President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Dr. Idi Amin Dada, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of all the beasts of the earth and the fish of the seas and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in general and Uganda in particular.”
Amin also considered himself the uncrowned king of Scotland.