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OPINION: Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu – The Ibn Khaldun of our time

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Professor Abdalla Adamu

By Hassan Auwalu Muhammad

Every area of ​​knowledge has its specialties, and people will rarely have experience in a variety of fields.

For example, it can be difficult for someone who specialized in the area of health to be involved in the area of communications, or for someone who is studying political science to return to health.

However, there are certain types of people upon whom God has bestowed unique abilities, which made them different from their peers and contemporaries.

There are not many of such people, and even if you find them, it is mostly in countries that are advanced in terms of their education and economic growths.

Their research in different fields often allows them to be unlike other people.

Kano State used to be one of the least considered cities in the world as regards the number of people with high level of Western education.

However, after discovering the benefits of it, there are many gifted individuals with an extensive background in research such as Prof. Abdallah Uba Adamu.

Brilliant Student

Prof. Abdallah Uba Adamu (born 25th April 1956 in Daneji, Kano city), in his story as told by all those who had grown up together with him, friends and relatives, testified that since childhood, he has being passionate about researching different areas of knowledge.

His father, the late KANTOMA of Kano, Dr Muhammadu Uba Adamu, was a renowned scholar through whose guidance and inspiration, Prof. Abdallah began his research, which later earned him the respect of being a full-blown researcher in different areas of knowledge.

After graduating from primary and secondary schools, he decided to study medicine but failed to secure admission to the university of his choice, which later forced him to go for B.Sc. in Education, Biology and Physiology in 1979 at Ahmadu Bello University.

He did his National Service at a high school in Umoarkrika, Imo State, before he proceeded to Chelsea College, the University of London where he earned a Master of Arts in Science Education in 1983.

He earned his doctorate from the University of Sussex in 1988 under the sponsorship of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission.

Youngest Professor

He started teaching as a Graduate Assistant at Bayero University Kano in 1980.

He re-invested himself in the field of research, which led to him becoming a Professor in Science Education in 1997 and also the youngest Professor in Bayero University at the time.

He presented his Professorial Inaugural Lecture in 2004, entitled ‘Sunset at Dawn, and Darkness at Noon: Reconstructing the Mechanisms of Literacy in Indigenous Communities’ in which he explored the use of Arabic alphabet as Hausa language literary devices in Ajami writings.

He proposed what he called ‘Ajamization of Knowledge’ as an alternative educational strategy, for millions of Qur’anic school pupils to acquire contemporary education in a literary script they know, rather than the Latin alphabet.

Professor Adamu was a Fulbright African Senior Research Scholar at the Centre for Studies in Higher Education, the University of California, Berkeley from 1991 to 1992.

While there, he wrote a monograph, Reform and Adaptation in Nigerian University Curricula, published by The Edwin Mellon Press, New York, in 1994, which explores the transfer of educational influence and structures from the United States to Nigeria, and the substitution of the British educational system in Nigeria in the process.

Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu has delivered commissioned lectures at Rutgers State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick (2015); the University of Warsaw, Poland (2012); Institute of Mediterranean and Oriental Cultures; Polish Academy of Sciences Warsaw, Poland (2012); University of Florida  (2010), University of Basel, Switzerland (2009); Barnard College, Columbia University, New York (2007); School of African and Oriental Studies, University of London (2006); and Institute of Afrinkanistic, University of Cologne, Germany (2004).

Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu started his study in Media after the emergence of the film industry in Kano State in the 90s.

From that time on, his focus shifted from Education to Communication.

He earned his second professorship in media and cultural communication in 2012, from the Department of Mass Communications Bayero University Kano.

Prof.  Abdallah Uba Adamu is the first Nigerian to hold double professorship in two very different disciplines.

He has over 117 publications, most of which were published outside the country.

He had also attended and presented papers in more than 200 conferences and workshops.

In fact he is scheduled for another workshop in the University of Florida in October 2020. He is one of the few Nigerian academics willing to tell the world about the intellectual output through his own independent website at www.auadamu.com.

Computer Pioneer

In the knowledge of computer, Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu is said to be among the first few people with a vast knowledge of computer in Bayero University, Kano.

He was the first person to bring the computer PC 1512 to Kano State in 1988.

With the introduction of the internet, he was the first person to type Hausa words into computer with a hooked top showing the change of meaning from one word to another.

He served also as Director of Management Information System (MIS) in Bayero University Kano.

Although Professor Abdallah has never studied Hausa as a course, his deep knowledge of Hausa literature has led many to wonder whether Hausa was his area of specialization.

Prof. Adamu’s vast knowledge of Geography and Public Administrations made him stand out among the rest.

In the entertainment industry, Professor Abdallah excelled in the field of Hausa Rap, which led to the formation of a musical concert during the British Council era in Kano State.

NOUN VC

The Government of President Muhammadu Buhari has selected Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu as the Vice-Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria thanks to his expertise and research.

He assumed office in February 2016, and will leave on 10th February 2020, almost six months from now.

Upon his arrival he realized that the university itself was considered more of a regional than a national institution.

His first move was to nationalize it by ensuring that all the six principal officers of the university come from the six Geopolitical zones of the country.

This is the only university with this administrative structure.

He immediately began a plan to ensure that the Headquarters of the university relocated from Lagos to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, despite the threats and challenges he faced.

Without hesitation, he began expanding the new headquarters of the university in Abuja, and in a short period moved from Lagos to Abuja.

He also stopped the outsourcing of students’ portal and facilitation to third party companies and created directorates in the university that handled all these functions, saving the government a huge sum of money.

Successes @ NOUN

Here are a few of the achievements so far made by Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu as the vice-Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN):

From the very beginning, the first step he made was ensuring the relocation of the university headquarters from Lagos State to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

He has built numerous study centres across Nigeria, especially in the northern part of the country.

He encouraged politicians to use their constituency projects to build the centres.

Due to his persuasion, about 18 were built in Kano, 15 by Distinguished Senator Barau Jibril in his Senatorial District, two by Honourable Aminu Suleiman in Fagge and Kwaciri, and the biggest and most impressive of all, the one by Honourable Mustapha Bala Mai Gidan Ruwa at Dawakin Kudu.

This last one is the biggest and most comprehensive in Nigeria.

In fact, it is better than many universities, yet it is only a study centre.

Other places he fought for study centres include Katsina, Jigawa, Delta, Ondo and Edo States.

Prof. Abdallah has worked hard to employ many young people at the university under the Employment Act, and with the permission of the legal organs of the Government, and many young Nigerians have been employed in different capacities at the university, particularly in Computer Science.

This was before IPPIS stopped employment.

He re-built the University’s FM station in Lagos for the university to broadcast programs like any other FM station in the country.

Before becoming the VC, all students’ books and materials were produced from outside the university, which cost a large amount of money.

However, he later built a university printing press that would provide all the basic things that university students need, which saves the government a lot of money.

He has improved the school’s internet system so that students can read and research information on various subjects easily.

During the Pandemic lockdown, NOUN was the only university conducting online Pen-on-Paper examination using Artificial Intelligence software that detects cheating.

The students did the examinations at home without going to any Study Center.

Professor Abdallah found a Mosque at the National University Headquarters in Abuja already built by the Contractors building the University.

To show his liberal attitude, when the Christian community asked for a place of worship, he allocated lands to Protestant and Catholics for them to build their Churches, but informed them that they have to source the money to build their worship places as it is not government policy to build worship places for either Muslims or Christians.

Even the mosque was built privately by a contractor without any government funding.

Thus one of his greatest efforts was to unite the staff of the university by working together without any discrimination based on race, religion or ethnicity.

He has worked tirelessly with other major universities in the world to improve the academic system at the university he leads.

Prof. Abdallah built a Media Centre for the university at its Jabi Headquarters in Abuja.

Monogamist for life

Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu is a philanthropist, a man of the masses, easy-going, man of his words because no matter what, he will not lie to you about something he cannot do just to impress you.

Above all, he is incorruptible.

In the use of language, both Hausa and English, you can say he is an orator.

When he speaks in the Hausa language, you would assume he cannot speak the English language at all, but when he addresses you in the English language, you would think Professor Abdallah is an English man.

He was crowned NZE OKAA OMEE, a traditional title in the Awene Ezema Olo Kingdom of Ezeagu LGA Enugu state.

Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu will complete his term as vice-chancellor on 10th February 2021 and return to Bayero University Kano and resume duties on 1st March 2021.

He has one wife and four children, and says he is not ready to marry another wife as the one he has, whom he married in 1987 as his first and last wife, is more than four wives.

His children are all grown up, except the youngest who is 13 years. One is a married computer programmer, another a barrister who lives outside the country with her family and the only male is a Businessman.

Hassan Auwalu Muhammad  a student  of Mass communication at  Bayero University  Kano can be reached via m.shareef1980@gmail.com

 

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Five factors that increase divorce rate in Kano

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Divorce Image

Aminu Abdullahi

A sociologist at  Bayero University Kano (BUK) Aminu Sabo Dambazau has identified five factors that increase the  rate of divorce in Kano state.

Mr Dambazau told Kano Focus on Thursday that the factors including mismatched characters, rivalry, forced marriage, suspicion, and dissatisfaction.

Mismached characters

Mr Dambazau said intending couples rush into marriage without understanding each other.

“Some people misuse the courtship period in solely expressing their feelings without exploring the characters and expectations of their partners.

“They neither understand the obligations and responsibilities of marriage nor do they have the chance to find out the characters, habits, and life views of each other.

“Therefore after marriage when their true characters appear they would start to have problem in their marriages.” Mr Dambazau said.

Rivalry

The scholar said about 45% of divorce cases in Kano state are caused by co-wife rivalry.

He said a lot of marriages come to an end the moment the husband starts wooing a second wife.

“Most women do not accept a co-wife and prefer to end the marriage than share their husbands with another woman.

“This habit leads to the breakup of many marriages,” he stated.

Forced marriage

Mr Dambazau said another major factor that causes divorce in Kano state is forced marriage.

He said women are still forced into marrying a man they do not love due to financial or social pressure on the parents.

“Whenever a wife doesn’t like her husband she will do anything possible to get a divorce.

“Frankly speaking, forced marriage will never last as no one can stay with a person he hates,” he stated.

Suspicion

The BUK sociologist said suspicion among couples contributes immensely to the high rate of divorce in Kano state.

“No couple will live in peace as long as they are suspicious of one another.

“Unfortunately this is a growing problem as some women always check their husband’s phones in order to find incriminating evidence.” Mr Dambazau said.

Dissatisfaction

He added that some husbands fail to gratify the needs of their wives such as feeding, clothing, and sexual desire.

“Whenever a husband fails to feed his wife he will not get respect from her.

“How will you marry a woman when you cannot cater for her needs?

“This is what is happening in our society.” The lecturer said.

The road to divorce

Some divorcees in Kano corroborated the scholar’s findings.

Maryam Abdullahi, mother of a one year old child said she left her husband after a year because he refused to allow her continue with her studies.

“I was married off to him immediately after completing secondary school even though I told my parents that I want to continue to a higher institution.

“Before the marriage, he promised to allow me continue with my education but he broke the promise after our wedding.” She said.

Ms Abdullahi said she does not regret her decision to end the marriage.

“By God’s will I’ll fulfill my ambition and I’m optimistic to have my desired husband,” Maryam said.

Unfair husband

Another divorcee Surayya Abubakar whose marriage ended after eight months said her husband was giving priority to her co-wife.

“He favored her over me and used to buy things for her that he was not buying for me.

“When I complained, he divorced me.

“Our parents met several times but the mediation was in vain as he did not change.

“I also asked him if I was offending him but he said I wasn’t.” Ms Abubakar said.

I’ll never marry again

But Ramla Yusuf whose marriage lasted five months explained that her husband was a fraud who posed as a rich business man before the marriage.

“I realized that he was a liar during the wedding dinner when he couldn’t provide the bridal gown.

“He lied that he owned a big house but I was taken to an old rental house.

“It turned out that he was jobless and penniless.

“I really suffered in his hand and after only five months I asked him to divorce me.” She said.

Ms Yusuf added that she does not plan to marry again as she didn’t know that marriage could be so painful.

Dirty woman

On his part, a male divorcee, Usman Shehu said he divorced his wife after a year of marriage because she was dirty and did not know how to cook delicious meals.

“I cautioned her to change her habit but she refused and I also complained to her parents but still nothing changed.

“I swear she can spend two days without taking a bath – she was not a wife anybody will bear to live with,” Mr Shehu said.

Another person Umar Ibrahim said he divorced his wife because she did not respect him and his family.

“We married for love but I did not know she was bad until she came to my house.

“She cheated me severely and also inflicted tension between my family and I,” he lamented.

Mr Ibrahim said has been sleeping well since he divorced her two months ago.

How to reduce divorce in Kano

Mr Dambazau, who has a PhD in Sociology, said the best means of reducing the rate of divorce in Kano state is to revive the defunct Zauren Sulhu community forum established by the Ibrahim Shekarau administration.

Zauren Sulhu was one of the ways to discuss community issues such as marital problems.

“The forum will listen to both sides and counsel them without leading to divorce. He said.

Mr Dambazau said the families of the couples can mediate and save the marriages from divorce.

Islamic perspective

An Islamic cleric Nuhu Muhammad said there are things that couples should observe before getting married.

“Every woman or man should make sure their partner has Islamic knowledge and good character.

“Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said you should marry whoever you agree with his religiosity,” he said.

Mr Muhammad advised couples to avoid telling lies before marriage because most marriages breakdown due to false expectations.

“They don’t display who they are because they blindly want to possess each other so after the marriage when the truth is revealed they divorce.” The Islamic scholar said.

He therefore advised couples to build their marriages based on the teachings of Islam and exercise patience with one another.

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Hisbah nabs 4 teenagers for illicit sex

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Kano Hisbah Guards

Zulaiha Danjuma

The Kano state Hisbah Board has arrested four teenagers engaged in illicit sex at Dorayi area of Kano metropolis.

Hisbah spokesperson, Lawan Ibrahim Fagge said two young men lured two female teenagers from Medile into a love nest at Dorayi.

Mr Fagge said one of the girls spent five days with the men  while the other spent three days before they were arrested following a tip off from her brother.

He said one of the young men is the caretaker of the house while the other is his friend.

He added that both couples had been taken to court.

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Court summons KAROTA MD over tricycle tracker

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Bappa Babba Dan Agundi

Mukhtar Yahya Usman

A magistrate court has issued a criminal summons to the Managing Director of Kano Road Transport Agency (KAROTA), for allegedly defrauding Adai-daita Sahu tricycle operators.

Kano Focus reports that the presiding judge of the court sitting at Gidan Murtala Kano, Muhammad Jibril ordered Bappa Babba Dan Agundi to appear on September 30.

Counsel to the tricycle operators, Abba Hikima filed   a two-count charge of breach of trust and cheating against Mr Dan Agundi.

Mr Hikima told Kano Focus that the KAROTA MD had issued stickers to tricycle operators who had paid N8,000 each for an electronic tracking device.

“We feel this is a breach of trust and it’s contrary to section 311 and 320 of the penal code of Kano State and can lead to imprisonment for not less than 7 years,” he said.

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