28 January 1991
Siad Barre shared the fate of many post liberation leaders in Africa. Having started out as policemen in the Italian governed part of Somalia prior to World War Two, Barre was found to excel in the sphere of politics. After Somalia gained independence he rapidly rose to the post of a junior general in the army. Thereafter he was one of the main organisers of a military coup that overthrew the civilian government, and he was named the new President. His reign was marked by increasing levels of corruption and brutality, economic and military misadventure and in its final stages, torture and murder. He was eventually ousted by his people and he fled Somalia on 28 January 1991. He ruled Somalia for 22 years.