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Domestic violence: Kano community prescribes psychiatric test for couples before marriage

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Mukhtar Yahaya Usman

Dan Bare community, a suburb of in Kumbotso local government area of Kano state has introduced a mandatory requirement for prospective couples to conduct psychiatric tests before they are allowed to marry.

In an exclusive interview with KANO FOCUS, Ward Head of Dan Bare (D), Saifullahi Abba Labaran said the rule became necessary in order to curb rampant cases of domestic violence that sometimes claim lives among spouses.

Mr Labaran explained that elders in the community had held extensive deliberations before finally agreeing to adopt the mental health test rule, adding that it will bring stability in the society.

Where to conduct the test

The ward head said the elders agreed that any prospective couple that intends to get married in the community would be required to undergo brain tests and other related procedures at Psychiatric Hospital Dawanau–the main mental health facility in Kano state.

‘‘We discussed the matter with the village head and other elders in the area and gave their pull support to impose it and even the village head promised to engage other ward heads,” he said.

Mr Labaran added that once couples are ready for the test, a representative from the office of the ward head would then be asked to accompany them to the hospital to ensure that the test results are genuine.

‘‘After the tests have been carried out, we will ask for three copies of each result. The first is for the groom’s family, the second is for the bride’s family and the third is for the ward head.

‘‘We choose this way because most of the time, you discover that perpetrators of domestic violence that involves killing usually test positive for mental illness. This is why it is necessary to conduct this type of test before marriage,”he said.

Price for disobedience

 Asked about the penalties prescribed for those who refuse to abide by the rule, Mr Labaran warned that errant couples would be dealt with by community elders.

‘‘If someone disobeys us we will send him to our elders to deal with him as I’m not only the one who agreed to it but all elders in the community,’’ he said.

He added that Dan Bare community also resolves that suitors from outside the community must also subject themselves to the mental health tests before they can marry a woman in the area.

‘‘If an outsider comes to seek the hands of our daughters in marriage, we will force him to do the test otherwise, the marriage will not happen.

‘‘But if our community members decide to marry elsewhere, then we will not be responsible for whatever happens since it is not within our jurisdiction,” Mr Labaran explained.

Residents react

But residents of Dan Bare have expressed mixed reactions to the development.

Nura Ibrahim Shu’aib, believes that despite being a good initiative, the mental health test rule requires adequate time and awareness before it could succeed.

However, another resident Abdulbasid Tijjani said he found the development unfamiliar, adding that he was unsure if he could agree to conduct a mental health assessment before marriage.

‘‘It’s really something new to us, but after the ward head explained it in detailed to us, then I found it very interesting,” he said.

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Shekarau advocates power shift to south

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Nasiru Yusuf

A former governor of Kano State, Ibrahim Shekarau, has urged the All Progressive Congress (APC) to field a southerner as its presidential candidate in 2023.

Ibrahim Shekarau says political power shift is necessary for all Nigerians to have a sense of belonging.

KANO FOCUS reports that Mr Shekarau, who is a serving senator, spoke in an interview with BBC Hausa Service on Wednesday. He said the idea is to ensure justice and fairness.

According to him, although rotational presidency is not written in APC’s constitution, he believes it is desirable for justice and fairness.

“For instance, the present six geopolitical zones are not reflected in Nigeria’s constitution, but it is a good arrangement. You cannot implement any policy in Nigeria without taking geopolitical zones into consideration.

“This is also the same with rotating the presidency between the North and the South. If we ignore power shift, we are not being fair to ourselves and we are not fair to history. In my opinion, power shift is necessary for all Nigerians to have a sense of belonging.

“I am of the opinion that, we should exercise patience and bring our brothers from the South close to us.

“You see, the North alone cannot produce the votes enough for the president. Likewise the South, it is only when we come together. My believe is not only geopolitical regions, there is no state in the federation that does not have a competent person to lead this country.

“Violating this arrangement will further divide Nigerians. Some will feel neglected or rejected,” Mr Shekarau said.

On the possibility of the opposition party fielding a northern candidate, the politician said both the PDP and APC face the same dilemma. “Each is trying to outsmart the other.

“My advice to the parties (APC and PDP) is they should not look at zoning from political exploitation, but what should be just and fair. Fair play and competence of the candidate should be the be the guiding principle,” he said.

Commenting on the defection of some politicians to the APC, Mr Shekarau described it as a remarkable success worthy of celebration.

He said: “within the last two months, two governors have defected to APC. It is quite a success. There are also groups and individuals who joined the party.

“However, there is a need to conduct congresses and elect party officials from the ward to national levels. There is also a need to set up a modality of how to spread political appointments across the country

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Kano gets 3,148 new polling units

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Mukhtar Yahya Usman

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has expanded the polling units in Kano state from 8,074 to 11,222 to create easy access to polling units.

Kano Focus reports that the INEC chairman, Mahmoud Yakubu revealed this to journalists on Wednesday in Abuja.

Mr Yakubu revealed that Kano Central has 1,978 more polling units while Kano South and Kano North have 658 and 513 respectively.

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People with disabilities will participate in future elections with ease–INEC

The 10 local governments that have the highest number of additional polling units are Nassarawa 334, Kumbotso 220, Gwale 207, Tarauni 207, and Ungoggo 179.

Others are Dala 163, Fagge 163, Kano Municipal 160, Danbatta 94, and Dawakin Kudu 92.

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Nigerian Navy to establish desert warfare institute in Kano

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Chief of Naval Staff CNS Real Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, has agreed to move Desert Warfare Institute to Kano.

KANO FOCUS reports that this was disclosed by, Chief of Policy and Plans, Nigerian Navy, COR Ezekobe

when he led a delegation to governor Ganduje at his office, in Kano, Wednesday, to brief the governor about development so far.

He said “We are here to actualize the fruitful engagement we had when His Excellency visited us on the 3rd of June. He Chief of Naval Staff directed me to lead this team in actualising some of the promises made to you when you visited the Naval headquarters.”

“Our project standing on 12 hectares of land, is a multi-purpose project. We are moving our Desert Warfare of our Special unit to Kano Your Excellency. This unit is highly trained in both United States of America and Britain. And they are recognized to be of best performance.”

“This is where we will use for a garment industry and other things that will be of significant benefit to the society.”

“We would like to develop a Barack, so that when the need arises we can defend ourselves and also the state. That will definitely help in improving the security of the state in particular and the nation in general.”

He requested that, the Chief of Naval Staff would want to deliver a lecture on Maritime in either Bayero University, Kano, for people here up North to understand the activities of the Nigerian Navy in the national scheme of things.

Ezkobe, a rear admiral in Nigerian Navy, requested another piece of land on behalf of the Naval Officers Wives Association (NOWA) for the establishment of hospital in the state.

“Naval Officers Wives Association (NOWA) is desirous of establishing a 200-bedded hospital in Kano. We also need to get a piece of land for this effort to see the light of the day,” he requested.

“Your Excellency we witnessed the tremendous development in your state. This is highly commendable Sir,” he concluded.

In his response, governor Ganduje appreciated the speed of the process for the visibility of the Nigerian Navy in the state, appreciating that, “We are so happy to have you here. I can see that the return match is so quick. This shows the level of seriousness from your part.”

“Your presence in Kano will definitely boost the morale of our youth in joining the Nigerian Navy. It will also improve our security of the state generally,” he stated.

“We are very much ready for all the requests you came with pertaining this and other projects for the development of the state. And for improving the security of our dear state. We are always ready.”

Concerning the Chief of Naval State Conference, Ganduje said the state would always be ready to see to the realisation of the proposed Conference, adding that, “For the Conference we will create an enabling environment for it to hold.”

“We will also facilitate for the proposed Maritime lecture by the Chief of Naval Staff in one of our universities. There is no doubt about this. Tell him he is always welcome.”

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