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Adieu, Abubakar A. Badawi: An accountant per excellence

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Abubakar Badawi

Kabiru Isah Dandago

Sunday, May 10, 2020, was a sad day for accounting practitioners, scholars and students in Kano and Jigawa states as we suffered the irreparable loss of Alhaji Abubakar Ahmed Badawi.

After sustaining him for 75 years and three months, his creator decided to take him to his final abode, hopefully, heaven.

Alhaji Badawi’s death came 42 days after the tragic loss of an elder statesman of the profession, Alhaji Aminu Ibrahim, FCA.

He passed to the great beyond on March 29, 2020.

The late Ibrahim was the first chartered accountant in the old Kano State, past chairman of the Kano District Society of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), and a one-time member of the Governing Council of the institute.

Like Badawi, Ibrahim was a father, mentor, professional colleague and promoter of this writer at various levels.

May his soul rest in aljannatul fiddausi.

Thoroughbred professional

Alhaji Badawi’s life was full of exciting accomplishments in public financial management in particular and contribution to humanity in general.

It is important, therefore, to highlight some of his contributions to the accountancy profession, mentorship of future generation, deep-rooted social work and various inputs to national economic development for the present and future generation of accountants to learn some lessons.

This would also make readers to appreciate the values of the attributes he held on to as he set many excellent records that might be difficult to equate by the present and future generation of accountants in Nigeria and beyond.

Alhaji Badawi began his career as a public servant in 1970 when he got his first appointment in the old Kano State civil service, until 2006 when he retired.

As a thoroughbred professional, his retirement became another opportunity to render professional services as a consultant to the SPARC, DfID, World Bank and many other development partners. He also served as a resource person to many capacity- building training consultancy firms, especially on public financial management topics.

Alhaji Badawi’s integrity, independent-mindedness, competence, loyalty, humility and hard work endeared him to the first civilian governor of the old Kano State, the late Alhaji Muhammadu Abubakar Rimi, who appointed him as accountant- general of the state in 1982, just 12 years into his civil service career.

He was retained by Rimi’s successor, the late Alhaji Abdu Dawakin Tofa, likewise the late Alhaji Sabo Bakin Zuwo.

He occupied the position until 1984. This shows that Alhaji Badawi had the privilege of working with all the three civilian governors of the old Kano State in the Second Republic as accountant-general. What a record! In 1989, Brigadier Idris Garba appointed him as auditor-general for local government, a position he held until 1992 when Architect Kabiru Ibrahim Gaya moved him from that office to the office of the auditor-general of the state.

He served as auditor-general for the state until 2006 when he retired from active public service.

This shows that he had served in that capacity three years for local government and 14 years for state, making a total of 17 years in active service as auditor-general.

He, therefore, worked with four military governors (Idris Garba, Abdullahi Wase, Dominic Oneya and Aminu Kontagora) and three civilian governors (Kabiru Gaya, Rabiu Kwankwaso and Ibrahim Shekarau) as auditor- general.

This is another record to beat or equate, not only in Nigeria but even across the African continent.

All the governors he worked with accepted him as a trustworthy and reliable officer.

With the godly attributes in him, he was able to discharge his duties meritoriously and retired from service unblemished.

There was no trace of illegally acquired wealth against him.

Great mentor

While discharging his duties, he mentored many people.

Some of those he mentored were Alhaji Isma’ila Y. Takai (a former accountant-general, Kano State); Alhaji Badaru Abubakar (governor of Jigawa State); the late Auwalu Balarabe Wudil (former auditor-general, Kano State); Alhaji Ahmad Idris (accountant-general of the federation, AGF); Alhaji Ali Ben Musa (former auditor-general, local government); Alhaji Muhammad BB Farouk (auditor-general, local government ); Alhaji Tijjani N. Kura (former auditor-general, Kano State); Hajiya Amina Inuwa Sa’id (auditor-general, Kano State), and Alhaji Hassan A. Jakada (a retired director of audit), among many others.

It is sad to mention that one of his mentees, Alhaji Musa Bebeji, died in the morning of the same May 10, 2020 when Badawi died. May his gentle soul rest in aljannatul fiddausi.

Should all the civil servants across the country adopt Alhaji Badawi’s attributes, the Nigerian civil service would become honourable, productive, reliable and incorruptible.

It would ultimately become the foundation the country deserves for sustainable development.

In upholding the sanctity of the accountancy profession, Badawi was a dogged fighter.

As accountant-general and auditor-general, he showed younger ones how to serve public interest.

But in view of the ethical principles they are expected to comply with in the discharge of their various duties as accountants, the younger ones need to belong to professional bodies.

ANAN pioneer

After obtaining his professional training at the United Kingdom (UK), he was one of the leading figures in the struggle for the recognition of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN).

His reason for joining the struggle, as he told this writer, was to create room for competition in the accountancy services market.

He had a strong belief in the saying that “healthy competition is always a vehicle to efficiency and effectiveness.’’

As the war was won and the ANAN was recognized by law as the second professional accountancy body in Nigeria, Alhaji Badawi was made a pioneer council member of the association.

His membership number had two digits.

He became a rallying point for the ANAN in the northern part of the country, encouraging all qualified accounting graduates to belong, including this writer.

He served as referee to any interested person who was qualified to be enrolled into the membership of the association.

Friend of accounting students

Alhaji Badawi was also an excellent friend or associate of accounting students at various levels.

He was always ready to be invited to give talks or present papers to students of polytechnic or university on topical accounting issues. He used to receive students in his office and house and allow them chance to engage him with questions or problems that would require his wisdom.

He was also very willing to assist them with books, journals or even money to buy some relevant academic materials.

At Bayero University, Kano, Badawi was one of the 10 eminent accounting personalities nominated by this writer in 2002 when he was the head of Accounting Department.

The vice chancellor then, Professor Musa Abdullahi, appointed them as honorary members of the department.

For 18 years, Alhaji Badawi and Alhaji Aminu Ibrahim were active members of the department.

They attended departmental seminars, meetings and annual national conferences.

In fact, they assisted the department with contacts of individuals and organizations that contributed money and other resources for the conduct of the national conferences.

On retirement, Alhaji Badawi became a consultant to many development partners on various accounting and auditing matters and a resource person to some human development training firms on various topical issues.

By his continuous engagement as a consultant and resource person, Alhaji Badawi continued to serve humanity from 1970 till he died in 2020.

And he was modest in his charges for all the consultancy services he rendered.

Now that Alhaji Badawi is back to his creator, we pray for him to be in the aljannatul fiddausi.

We also pray for his wonderful family, especially his best half, Prof Gaji A. Badawi, to have the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. For us that have been his mentees over the years, and all our mentees as well, let’s hold on to his attributes: integrity, independent-mindedness, competence, loyalty, humility and hard work.

We shall meet again in aljannatul fiddaus, in sha Allah

Professor Dandago is of the Department of Accounting, Bayero University, Kano. He wrote this piece with contribution from the ANAN, Kano State. He can be reached on kidandago@gmail.com, 08023360386

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Opinion

Childhood killer diseases: NGO gets $29m grants to reach 1m caregivers

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An International Non-Governmental Organization, New Incentive, said it has received a grant of $29 million under it project – All Babies Are Equal targeted to reach over one million caregivers and immunize their infants against childhood killer diseases in four Northwest States .

Kano Focus reports that the four Northern states are Katsina, Jigawa, Zamfara and Sokoto.

These childhood killer diseases include, tuberculosis, diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type B, pneumococcal disease and measles.

The Stakeholder Relations Director, of the NGO Nura Muhammad disclosed this at a stakeholders meeting with the benefiting states held in Kano.

Muhammad said the grant would be disbursed as conditional cash transfer to support the caregivers to ensure they avail their infants for the Immunization.

He said, “New Incentive – All Babies Are Equal, NI-ABAE has received commitments of over $29 million of funding over the next 3 years to reach over 1 million caregivers and their infants in Jigawa, Katsina, Zamfara, and Sokoto States.

This covers expansion to 35 LGAs with continued operations through Dec 2023.

“The organization aims to reduce child mortality through cost-effective and evidence-based health interventions.

In Nigeria, the organization operates as the All Babies Are Equal Initiative and implements the conditional cash transfers (CCT) for routine immunization (CCTs for RI) program.

“The flagship CCTs for RI program operated by ABAE disburses cash incentives to caregivers conditional on infants receiving four vaccines: BCG (against tuberculosis), PENTA (against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae type b), PCV (against pneumococcal disease), and MCV (against measles).

These vaccinations are part of the routine schedule for infant immunizations in Nigeria and are provided at no cost to the caregiver through government-supported clinics.

Upon confirmation of their infant receiving a vaccine, the caregiver receives ₦500 for the first four routine immunization visits and ₦2,000 for the fifth visit.

“The cash transfers compensate for transport, lost trading income, and waiting time while creating behavioural change through awareness of routine immunizations.

“The CCTs for RI Program has been implemented in the states of Katsina, Zamfara, 2017 while Jigawa in 2018.

To date, the program has enrolled over 390,000 infants whose caregivers have received over 1 billion naira in conditional cash transfers.

An independent impact assessment of NI-ABAE’s CCTs for RI program (2017 – 2020) found that the program increases the likelihood that children would be fully immunized by 27 percentage points, and increases rates of individual vaccinations by 14 to 21 percentage points.

Beyond vaccination, the assessment found that the program contributed to improved knowledge about vaccination among caregivers in the catchment areas served by the program.

“Immunization is one of the most effective public health interventions, saving 2 to 3 million lives yearly (WHO) and there is evidence that suggests a 27 percentage points increase in the likelihood that children would be fully immunized by a conditional cash transfers for routine immunization program (NI-ABAE RCT Impact Assessment 2017-2020),” the Stakeholder Relations Director, Nura Muhammad however said.

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Opinion

Meet Abdul: The most talented Dabo Babies player of all time

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Picking out the footballing stars of the future is a tricky task.

There are so many factors which could hinder the progression of even the most professional of teenagers.

But some do seem destined to reach the top, while others display a work ethic that’s even greater than the natural talent at their disposal.

The second paragraph could be the case with Dabo Babies talented, 19-year-old forward Abdul Attacker.

He burst onto the scene when he was playing for a local club, Golden Bullet and was snapped up by famous Dabo Babes FC after the departure of former Nigeria U-20 star, Nazifi Yahaya.

And has since caught the attention of football enthusiast across the country with his brilliant display for Dabo Babes.

Abdul tormented four-time Nigeria Professional Football League Champions, Kano Pillars FC after he scored twice against the Sai Masu Gida in a friendly match before the kickoff of the second stanza of the just concluded 2020/2021 Nigeria Professional Football League season (NPFL).

He was the catalyst to Dabo Babes good run to the Kano state Tofa Premier League title driving the famous academy from game to game until they reach the final.

The dazzling forward produces mouthwatering display to earn himself accolades from the Pen Profession who could not hide their love for the next Super Star during the Tofa Premier League final.

He likes his game to that of Real Madrid forward, Karim Benzema and Bayern Munich deadly striker, Robert Lewandowski.

The 19-year-old’s talent and versatility has some people wondering whether he could be a bolster for the Nigeria National U-20 team, the Flying Eagles for their upcoming assignments.

As preparations for the 2020/21 Nigeria Professional Football League season gearing towards climax, many top clubs are interested in snapping him to bolster their squad as well as few other European top teams.

He has scored 55 goals and provided further 22 assists for Dabo Babes in less than three and a half years.

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Opinion

Lamido, Jega celebrate NEPU @ 71 

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Aminu Kano

Dr. Nuruddeen Muhammad 

Yesterday, Sunday, the 8th of August, 2021, I accompanied His Excellency Dr Sule Lamido  (CON) who was the speaker at a symposium organised by the Aminu Kano Centre for Democratic Studies, Bayero University Kano (Mambayya House) to commemorate the 71st anniversary of the founding of the Northern Elements Progressives Union (NEPU), with the theme; ‘Politics of Principles and the Phenomenon of Political Party Defections in Nigeria’.

Sule Lamido

The event which held under the distinguished chairmanship of the cerebral Dr. Tijjani Muhammad Naniya, also had the ebullient Dr. Auwalu Anwar as the sole discussant. While Professor Attahiru Jega, Professor Dandatti Abdulkadir, Dr. Akilu Sani Indabawa, Professor Hafiz Abubakar, Professor Sule Bello, Dr. Nasir Fagge, former NEPU/PRP regional, federal and state parliamentarians, women and youth leaders from across the country, notably Kano, Jigawa, Katsina and Kaduna States all ran incisive commentaries.

Prof. Dandatti Abdulkadir

The cacophony of voices were as fierce as they were sharply different in tone, content and delivery. But by far, that which stood out and generated most responses was Dr Lamido’s lead assertion that the raison d’etre for the NEPU/PRP ideological and political initiatives was to liberate the common folks (the Talakawas), first from the clutches of the combined reppression of the colonial overloads and their willing surrogates in the Native Authority establishments in Northern Nigeria, and the restrictions placed on them in political participation, aspirations and freedoms.

He forcefully argued that the movements have achieved on both counts as the children of yesterday’s Talakawas are today the new overloads and oppressors who deny their fellow Talakawas quality leadership as presidents, governors, parliamentarians, ministers, council chairmen and their councils. He concluded that the movements (atleast as organised political actions) should rest and cease to exist. And that today’s progressives should instead leverage around available political opportunities/platforms to confront the existing selfish order using present day political sentiments and realities as mobilization tools.

Prof. Hafiz Abubakar

But recalling copiously from memory, the lead speaker canvassed for an ideological graft transplant from the NEPU/PRP days in ways that the moral and ethical characters of both politics and governance of today can benefit from the sound value systems of old oder.

He narrated how he first resigned as a member of the House of Representatives in Lagos in 1983 purely on moral grounds, and then flew to Kano to convince the then Governor Alhaji Abubakar Rimi to do same as the governor of the old Kano State when the duo defected from the People’s Redemption Party (PRP) that gave them the mandates in the first place.

He then described the present phenomenon of political party defections in Nigeria as the worst form of corruption.

This profound submission drew a symphony of responses from today’s PRP practitioners who are mostly academics. Leading the park was Professor Attahiru Jega who argued that without justice in leadership and the level of impunity as is the case today, the NEPU/PRP cause has just begun and asked Sule Lamido to come lead the national onslaught.

Many other PhDs and Professors joined in the call that Lamido would later say lacked sufficient local and broader national political insight. It is significant to note that I was to totally align myself with the Sule Lamido’s perspective of the argument only yesterday, having engaged with him for over a decade on the same exact topic as the Jegas had done yesterday at Mambayya.

I am now fully convinced that the NEPU/PRP politics exclusively represented yesterday’s political sentiments and realities in the North with no much utility for either our present political and social circumstances or broader national appeal.

Sule Lamido, Dr Nuruddeen Muhammad and other guests

The Mambayya rendezvous is prehaps the only remaining theatre in Nigeria where political practitioners, activists and ideologues meet political researchers, theorists and even wannabees in a real time intellectual brawl. Bayero University Kano is both creative and thoughful in this annual ritual. Mallam Aminu Kano and his comrades had lived a very politically active, intellectually robust, and ideologically/philosophically sound lives to deserve this honour.

When academic excellence and classroom sense meet self taught philosophers and the practical hands on the streets, a cetain unique flavour emerges. Yesterday’s flavor has unfortunately left a distinctively sour test in my mouth. The fact that the Talaka is today his very own oppressor is a very bitter pill for some of us to swallow. And even more bitter is the second fact that the second on coming liberation of the Talakawas (from themselves this time around) will have to invent it’s devices with no NEPU/PRP emotional relic to rely on.

This, on a very personal note, was a befitting way to round off my three weeks extended sallah visit in Jigawa.

Dr. Muhammad was Nigeria’s former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs & Federal Minister of Information as

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