Christopher Gwabin Musa

General Christopher Gwabin Musa OFR (born 25 December 1967) is a Nigerian Army general who is the 18th Chief of Defence Staff of Nigeria.[1] He was appointed by President Bola Tinubu on 19 June 2023.[2][3]

Christopher Gwabin Musa
Musa in 2024
Chief of Defence Staff
Assumed office
23 June 2023
PresidentBola Tinubu
Preceded byLucky Irabor
Personal details
Born (1967-12-25) 25 December 1967 (age 56)
Sokoto, North-Western State (now in Sokoto State), Nigeria
Alma mater
Military service
Allegiance Nigeria
Branch/service Nigerian Army
Years of service1986–present
Rank General

Early life and education


Musa was born on 25 December 1967 in Sokoto in the defunct North-Western State (now in Sokoto State) Nigeria. He hails from Zangon Kataf, southern Kaduna State, Nigeria.[1]

In 1974, Musa attended Marafa Danbaba Primary School Sokoto, and left to Model Primary School Dorowa Road Sokoto in 1978 where he remained until 1980. He underwent training in a Vocational Training Centre in Gaummi, Sokoto between 1980 and 1981.[4]

In 1981, he was enrolled into Federal Government College, Sokoto, completing his O levels in 1985. He was part of the National Cadet Corps while enrolled there. He was admitted to the College of Advanced Studies, Zaria, and was there until 1986.[4]

In 1986, Musa was enrolled into the Nigerian Defence Academy, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science (Hons) on graduation in 1991 and got commissioned into the Nigerian Army as a 2nd Lieutenant.[1][4]

In September 1991, he enrolled as a member of the 38th Regular Course 21 in the Nigerian Defence Academy and underwent a Mechanical Transportation Officers Course in 1992.

In 1993, Musa went through the Young Officers Course in Infantry, the Regimental Signal Officers Course in 1998, and 2000, a Junior Course at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji. Between 2004 and 2005, he went through a Senior Course at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College Jaji. Between 2007 and 2008, he earned an Advanced Diploma in Security Management from University of Lagos.[4]

Between 2012 and 2013, Musa obtained an Advanced Diploma in Defence and Strategies Course, and a Masters of Science (Military Science), International College of Defence Studies, National Defence University (ICDS-NDU), Changping, China.[1]

In 2017, Musa went through a Combined Joint Land Component Commander's Course on Leadership, US Army War College.[4]



Musa was the General Staff Officer 1, Training/Operations at HQ 81 Division. He also held the positions of Commanding Officer 73 Battalion, Assistant Director Operational Requirements at Department of Army Policy and Plans, Infantry Representative/Member Training Team at HQ Nigerian Army Armour Corps.[4]

In 2019, he was also the Deputy Chief, Staff Training/Operations, headquarters Infantry Centre and Corps, Commander Sector 3 Operation Lafiya Dole, Commander Sector 3 Multinational Joint Task Force in the Lake Tchad Region.[5][4]

In 2021, Musa was the Theatre Commander, Operation Hadin Kai.[5] His last position before his appointment as Chief of Defence Staff[6] was Commander, Nigerian Army Infantry Corps.[4][7]

Awards and accolades

Musa and wife being honoured with the title of Tsuung Atyap by the Agwatyap, HRH Sir Dominic Yahaya on 31 December 2023

In 2022, Musa won the Colin Powel Meritorious Award for Soldiering.[8][9]

In 2022, The African Youths Initiative For Good Governance and Peace honored him with the Nelson Mandela Exemplary Leadership Award, for his outstanding contributions to peacekeeping, and protection of the Nation’s territorial integrity.

Still, in December 2022, during the 2nd edition of the Africa-Dubai Investment Business Summit held in Dubai, he was awarded the Fellowship of the Institute of Leadership Assessment and Development.[10]

On 23 November 2023, Musa was honored as the Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient of the Year, by the Nigeria Service Awards panel of jury, after he came first place during the online nominations period.[11]

Other awards and accolades received by Musa include the National Honour of the Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR), the Nigerian Army Medal, the Grand Service Star, the Chief of Army Staff Commendation Award, and the Field Command Medal of Honour.[12]

On 31 December 2023, the Agwatyap’s Buffet was organised by the Atyap Chiefdom in his honor. This was held in the Agwatyap's palace, Atak Njei, Zangon Kataf, Kaduna State. Excitement filled the air as he got titled by the Agwatyap, HRH Sir Dominic Yahaya as Tsuung Atyap, meaning "Pillar of Atyap".[13]


  1. ^ a b c d "Meet Nigeria's new Service Chiefs: Details and facts". PM News Nigeria. 19 June 2023. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  2. ^ "Ribadu upgraded to NSA, Lagbaja named army chief… Tinubu appoints new security chiefs". TheCable. 19 June 2023. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  3. ^ Sanni, Kunle (19 June 2023). "Tinubu names ex-aide Egbetokun police inspector-general; Abiodun Lagbaja chief of army staff". Peoples Gazette. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Kanu, Peace; Origin, Nokai Origin (20 June 2023). "Meet Nigeria's New Service Chiefs". Voice of Nigeria. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  5. ^ a b "PROFILE: Meet New Chief of Defence Staff, Christopher Musa". Channels Television. 19 June 2023. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  6. ^ Samson, Benjamin (19 June 2023). "Group Hails Appointment of Musa as CDS". Blueprint. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  7. ^ "Christopher Musa Biography, New Chief of Defence Staff, Courses, State of Origin". NewsOnline Newspaper. 20 June 2023. Retrieved 1 July 2023.
  8. ^ "Gen Musa, N'East Theatre Commander, Wins Collin Powel Award for Soldiering". PR Nigeria. 10 October 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  9. ^ "Group hails Maj-Gen C.G. Musa's appointment as CDS". The Authority. 19 June 2023. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  10. ^ Augustine, Saint (16 December 2022). "Major Gen. Christopher Musa bags Fellowship of Institute of Leadership Assessment and Development". Primetime Reporters. Retrieved 26 December 2023.
  11. ^ "CDS Christopher Musa emerges 'Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient of Nigeria Service Awards". Emporium Reporters. 23 October 2023. Retrieved 26 December 2023.
  12. ^ "GENERAL CHRISTOPHER MUSA: A Life Committed to Service and Leadership". African Leadership Magazine November Edition. 1 November 2023. p. 12. Retrieved 26 December 2023.
  13. ^ Gusau, Tukur (2 January 2024). "Agwatyap Honours Gen Musa with Tswung Title, Advocates National Unity". PRNews.