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It is time for Nigeria to legalise corruption

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Maiwada Dammallam

 

According to Premium Times, Joshua Dariye and Jolly Nyame, former Governors of Plateau and Taraba States respectively, both jailed for multi-billion Naira corruption cases, were among the 157 prisoners granted pardon by the National Council of State. The two high profile ex-cons were granted pardon on “health grounds.”

This is a big slap on Nigerians and an irreversible setback on this administration’s war against corruption. It’s fair to say not only are high profile corruption cases languishing in various courts with waning prospect of exemplary convictions, With this, it could be said that the few cases judicially processed conclusively and satisfactorily in favor of shortchanged Nigerians are being used to question the commitment of this administration towards fighting corruption.

Many Nigerians had reasoned with the government for the sluggish judicial system that’s yet to make a reasonable statement about the ove rhyped repulsion of the administration against corruption. We excused the administration using the cumbersomeness of fighting the war using obsolete laws and somewhat compromised judiciary as a fair variable. It’s quite unfortunate that the National Council of State could simply sit and pardon people fairly adjudged as dangerous to Nigeria’s development and judicially convicted as such.

This is more painful coming almost simultaneously with the commendable decision of the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal on Wednesday which quashed the sentence of two years imprisonment with option of N750,000 fine imposed by the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, on a former official of the Police Pension Office, Yakubu Yusuf,  for stealing N24bn pension funds. In a unanimous judgment, the appellate court described the High Court’s sentence as unreasonable and substituted it with a total of six years’ imprisonment with an addition of N22.9bn fine. Many Nigerians thought they have seen the last of absurdities in our court rooms where corruption cases are decided in the most bizarre manner imaginable. How wrong! Now a new window of escape has been added to corruption warlords — the National Council! of state. I wonder if it could get any worse.

Even worse, while corrupt leaders who stole the country dry, effectively pushing many Nigerians into petty criminality are being pardoned for crimes that in saner climes are dealt with decisively using firing squads or the hangman’s noose, out prisons are over-populated with petty criminals awaiting trials for decades and mostly for crimes that  couldn’t earn them more 6 months to year. And nobody seem to notice or care about this inhuman denial or abuse of right and absolute disregard to human dignity.

So, who will question the logic of Nigerians for refusing to take this administration serious on its war against corruption? This ain’t brain surgery and an average Nigeria could guess that the Dariye and Nyame whose cases were argued before the National Security Council to be pardoned on “health grounds” will, in the next few months , be healthy enough to be running around in high-end Jeeps with blaring sirens, campaigning for senatorial seats or even the coveted office of the president. An average primary school kid could easily predict this anomaly with zero room for error. This is the saddest thing to happen to this administration after the intractable problem of insecurity largely caused by the corrupt tendencies of our leaders that, without a doubt, degraded Nigeria to what it is today.

I’m truly pained!

This article was first published on Dammalam Facebook account.

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Opinion

Kano Games Of The Throne: A Fight To Finish

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By Sanusi Bature Dawakin Tofa

“If you pursue evil with pleasure, the pleasure passes away and the evil remains; If you pursue good with labor, the labor passes away but the good remains.”— Cicero

At the first instance, the division of the Kano Emirate and elevation of the District Heads of Bichi, Rano, Karaye and Gaya to First Class Emirs was one to spite Emir Sanusi, who after all, did not give a wink.

Unsatisfied that dividing the Kano Emirate did not distract the popular Emir Sanusi from speaking truth to power, Ganduje and his co-travellers concocted allegations of insubordination that led to the unjust dethronement and banishment of Emir Sanusi, an action, which was widely condemned by men of good conscience.

Emir Sanusi fought and secured his freedom and fundamental human rights of freedom of movement through the Court; and moved on with his life, going about doing good and offering valuable advise to administrators and leaders across the world for a better world.

During his electioneering campaigns, part of the promises made to the people of Kano by Governor Yusuf was that his administration will not only restore the battered traditional institution of Kano, but will also reinstate Emir Sanusi who was maliciously removed by ex-Governor Ganduje.

Based on this promise, among others, the good people of Kano state overwhelmingly voted for Abba Gida-Gida. Today, the Governor has no choice, than to implement and execute the wishes of the people.

It is a social contract he signed with the people of Kano, which must be fulfilled, no matter, whose, Ox is gored.

In any case, Governor Yusuf’s populist action is not new to Kano political cum traditional landscape.

Adequate legal steps were taken to repeal the Kano Emirate Council Law (2019).

The enactment of the Emirate Council Law (2024) ensured the death and burial of Kano Emirate Law (2019), maliciously created by Ganduje as a weapon to humiliate and ridicule Emir Sanusi.

Indeed, Emir Sanusi’s return as the 16th Emir of Kano rekindled important aspect of Kano history which played out in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Recall that during the administration of ex-Governor Abubakar Rimi of blessed memory, there was an attempt to create five emirates in Kano State by splitting the Kano Emirate into five.

Some members of the royal family and other traditional rulers, who saw it as an attempt to weaken the Kano Emirate’s influence opposed this move.

However, Rimi went ahead with the plan and created the new emirates of Gaya, Karaye, Dutse, Rano, and Kano in April 1981.

The Kano Emirate was reduced in size and given a more ceremonial role, while the new emirates were granted more administrative and political powers.

The Emir of Kano at the time was not deposed. But was queried for his movements in July 1981 after returning from a journey.

The move led to riots in Kano and Rimi never recovered politically and resigned in 1983 after falling out with Aminu Kano.

When Governor Sabo Bakin Zuwo took over in 1983, he reversed the decision and restored the Kano Emirate to its original size and status, with the other emirates abolished.

His decision was seen as an attempt to restore the traditional balance of power and to address the concerns of those who opposed the creation of the new emirates.

Sabo Bakin Zuwo’s action was viewed by many as reflecting the wishes of the people, just the same way the good people of Kano state are hailing the People’s Governor, Alhaji Abba Kabir Yusuf for restoring the integrity of Kano Emirate.

I can vividly recall that many northern leaders and elite condemned the decision of Ganduje to balkanize the Kano Emirate into five in 2019.

They criticized the decision. They questioned the motive. They foresaw the consequences. They advised Ganduje against it, but all their overtures fell into deaf ears.

A renowned historian at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Prof. Nadir Nasidi, is among the experts who opposed the creation of the new emirates in Kano. According to him: “Kano is the only Emirate in the country with one unifying king. The creation of unnecessary kings is not palatable.

Many people, including myself, told the Ganduje administration that what he was doing wasn’t a good one.”

It is also pertinent to note that nobody agitated for the creation of four other Emirates in Kano.

It was entirely the sole decision of Ganduje and his gang to create problem in Kano’s traditional institution simply because they do not like the face and patriotic stance of Emir Sanusi.

The people of Kano never asked to be divided. We are one people. Nobody asked for new emirates.

So, what we are dealing with is a situation where somebody divided us. Kano Emirate is a kingdom that has existed for over 1000 years.

If you go to the king’s list in Kano, the king’s list from Baguada starts in 999 AD. We have a list of kings from Baguada up to the 16th Emir of Kano, Khalifa Muhammad Sanusi II.

Last Thursday, a Federal High Court, sitting in Kano, presided over by Justice A.M. Liman affirmed Aminu Bayero’s deposition as Emir of Kano. The Court also held the validity of Kano Emirate Law (2024).

Indeed, Justice Liman’s ruling, brought to an end, the argument on the deposition of former Emir Aminu Ado Bayero as the court ruled that the new Kano Emirate Repeal Law 2024 remains valid.

According to the ruling, all five Emirates of Gaya, Rano, Karaye, Kano and Bichi remained abolished.

While delivering the ruling, Justice A.M. Liman held that the Kano Emirate Repeal Law 2024 remains the law and its validity is intact but actions taken after assenting the law when an order from the court was issued are voided.

Recall that Governor Yusuf had assented to the new law and reinstated the 14th Emir of Kano Muhammadu Sanusi II as the 16th Emir of one united Kano at the same time.

The Liman, however, declared that: “Law is still the law, but actions carried out in the execution of the law are set aside.”

Justice Liman also granted a stay of proceeding and transfered the case to his learned brother of court three, Justice Amobeda.

This bars all parties from taking any step to enforce the ruling till after determination of the appeal. By this decision of the Federal High Court, the five former Emirs including that of Kano with eight Local Government Areas remain deposed and the defunct Emirates remained abolished.

It is therefore, ascertained that the 16th Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II remains on throne and Aminu Ado Bayero remains deposed while the legal tussle continues.

There is no gainsaying the fact that forces from outside the state are hanging up with the opposition All Progressive Congress (APC) to destabilize security in Kano, all in a bid to distract and discredit the administration of Governor Yusuf.

They are intentionally fueling the Kano Emirate crises to achieve their evil ambition.

The National Leader of our great party, the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Senator Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, saw the handwriting on the wall when during the flag-off of 82-kilometer rural road construction in his Madobi country home declared that the people of Kano will resist any attempt to undermine the constituted authority in the state. The Grand Commander of the Kwankwasiyya Movement reminded them that: “We have mass followership because people believe in us. We are pro-people and the NNPP administration is determined to serve them anywhere they voted for it.

We will not fold our arms and watch enemies of the state destroying the peaceful co-existence of our dear state, as we shall do everything possible to support the governor to succeed.

I am happy that he is not distracted and is focused on achieving his goals.

“There are people from Kano, enemies of the state, who also suffer mental illness and are the ones advising the Federal Government on how to take over Kano through a State of Emergency.

This is madness of the highest order that the good, peace loving and committed people Kano will resist.

In the build up to 2027, some desperate politicians are already on a mission of disruption, but we will rather prefer the two of us to loose than to allow them crush us.

We dare anybody, who thinks he can victimise us politically, to go and be rest assured that we are ready for the fight.

We are not afraid to be out of power because we will remain politicians in or out of government.

We cannot run away from our destiny, we are humans, we know what is good for us and we will pursue it vigorously.

The Federal Government is listening to some unpatriotic politicians from Kano, who will only contribute to its failure because the people of Kano will resist any attempt to undermine the constitutional responsibility of the Governor by any individual or group.

We are open to dialogue, truce and reconciliation, but we will not accept intimidation and political harassment of any sort.

We know how to play politics and we have all it takes to protect ourselves from any evil.”

More so, during the 6th edition of Shagalin Bikin Sallah, organized by the Kwankwasiyya Development Foundation (KDF) in honour of Senator Kwankwaso, held at his Miller Road residence last Tuesday, the former Defence Minister and Presidential candidate of NNPP in the 2023 general elections, reminded the audience that the Kwankwassiya members, where ever they are, remain peaceful people! And we will keep on being peaceful.

Our leader recalled that, “in 2019, we won election in this state (Kano), but the enemies of the State worked against us through INEC, through the Court, and so on, but what happened is now history.

The same thing! This time around, in 2023, we won election, overwhelmingly, and there was a lot of efforts by the enemies of the State, who are the minority here-mm, they worked so hard to take it; but by the grace of God, Allah in his own wisdom, decided to ensure justice is done; and I am sure that has gone a long way in maintaining peace and order in the State.

Now, it looks like the enemies are at it again! You know what is happening on the issue of the Emirate Council. We thank all those who are supporting the position of the government. We are one and we will continue to be one.”

Indeed, it amuses me when some people question the choice of Emir Muhammad Sanusi II! Ours is a government determined not to fail the people of Kano state.

Governor Yusuf craves to getting the best of team capable of giving Kano the best it deserves in terms of leadership and dispensation of democratic dividends.

In Emir Sanusi II we have an invaluable adviser that can help take Kano to greater heights. People from across the globe seek for his advice on economy and other divergent issues.

They tap from his wealth of experience in building community and nations.

Why then should we not make adequate and proper use of the asset God has bestowed on the people of Kano? Emir Sanusi II is an asset that we cannot afford to wish away.

An accomplished administrator, banker, financial risk manager, former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), motivational speaker, and above all, leader with unflinching love, charity to humanity and fear of God.

We cannot wish him away. Kano state cannot wish him away.

Therefore, emir Muhammadu Sanusi is here to stay as the Governor retains the exclusive right to depose or appoint emir in whatever circumstance.

The courageous leader and the Executive Governor of Kano His Excellency Alhaji Abba Kabir Yusuf is known for his determination to take any decision if he truly believe that decision will change the narrative of the state in a positive way.

Those thinking that Gov. Yusuf will have a rethink on his decision about reinstatement of Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II would certainly be disappointed, as a prince, a blood of the royal family and a political leader, the Governor is ready for the fight to finish on the ongoing emirate tussle.

“As it is today, the Governor retains the exclusive right to appoint or depose an emir in the state and to the layman’s understanding, matter of chieftancy is completely in the hands of state High Courts, there have been so many authority to it through various Supreme Court judgments.”

Former Emir of the Kano metro, Aminu Ado Bayero as simple as he used to be should have known that the Governor’s decision stands, it was the same executive power aided by the amendment of Emirate’s law by the State Assembly used by the former Ganduje to dethrone Emir Sanusi II and apointed him.

For the records, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero was never an emir of Kano, he was appointed an emir of eight metropolitant local government areas and from the look of things, he lacks all the qualities of an emir who is supposed to be patient and loyal to constituted authority.

By the new law which was accepted as valid by the latest judgement, Alhaji Aminu should resume to his former title of Wanban Kano and district head of Dala if he so wish.

My candid advise to him is and of course it’s coming from my sincire heart, staying in graveyard of late emirs at Nasarawa cemetery will not in anyway make the Governor revert his decision, the earlier Alhaji Aminu realise this the better for him to take a suit into the style of the 16th emir Sanusi II when he was dethroned, he should resigned to fate and accept his destiny by moving forward as a free man to once again enjoy his life as a private citizen.

No amount of pressure, harassments and intimidation from within and outside Kano will stop Kano state government from insisting on Khalifa Muhammad Sanusi II as the 16th Emir of one and indivisible Kano Emirate.

I conclude with the quotes of our leader, Senator Kwankwaso that: “The average Kano person does not want injustice; and that is the position of the Kwankwasiyya Movement. Our fathers and great grand-fathers fought injustice; and we will continue to do it as their sons and daughters here in Kano.”

Sanusi Bature Dawakin Tofa is the spokesperson to Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf/Director-General, Media and Publicity , Government House, Kano

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What, Exactly, is Kannywood? – Kannywood and Hausa Visual Counterculture

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Prof. Abdalla Uba Adamu

 

I will begin with the end, and in the end, I will end with the beginning.

What is Kannywood?

A Wikipedian provided this perspective: “Kannywood is the sobriquet for Hausa-language cinema. It is a part of the larger Nigerian cinema, known as Nollywood, which includes other production centres producing films in many other Nigerian languages.”

The emphasis, according to this Wikipedian, is on language, and they provided this perspective to distinguish Kannywood from its ‘larger cousin’, Nollywood. This means, whether we like it or not, Kannywood will continuously be seen as part of Nollywood, until we change the narrative ourselves and stopped being awed by an industry that is definitely junior to our own. Let me share a personal experience.

I was privileged to be a Zuma Film Festival Jury in its 2010 edition, as well as the paper presenter. I was the only northerner in the Jury, but not the only Hausa. The team was led by Rahmatou Keïta a Nigeriène Hausa journalist and filmmaker based in Paris. Films were submitted from all over the world, including many from Kannywood, and of course, Nollywood. We sat down over croissants and coffee to decide the approach we should adopt in awarding categories to the films.

Right there and then it was decided that there was no way any Kannywood film will win the ‘Best’ of the categories – Picture, Actor, Actress, Script, Cinematography, etc. I argued that if we went by this reasoning—for which there was no rational basis—that would exclude indigenous language films from getting recognition, including those from Nollywood not in English language. A lot of arguments ensured about production values, storylines, meeting the Zuma Festival submission requirements, etc.

In the end, after two hours of back and forth, I was asked to suggest a category in which all local language films would fit in, even if from Nollywood. I suggested Indigenous Film category. This was accepted. If it was any consolation, foreign film entries were also lumped into “Best Foreign Film”. Meaning that ONLY Nollywood films will get all the glory of being the Best of the best in everything. Thus, for the Nigerian Film Corporation, Kannywood is just a subset of Nollywood. Begging the question, What is Kannywood?

The least NFC can do is to reimagine the festival according to film cultures. Let us say, for the sake of the argument, NFC recognizes Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo film cultures. A separate festival can be held for each of these cultures celebrating their ‘Best’ actors, actresses, cinematography, script, etc. As it is now, no matter how excellent, for instance, a Hausa actor is (or think he is), he will never be ‘Best Actor’ in the NFC festival. And good luck to him attempting to be the Best Actor in a ‘mainstream’ Nollywood film in which he merely appears as a token Aboki to attract audiences to a Nollywood film.

Now, let me address the other variable in this post. “Counterculture” refers to a cultural group whose values, norms, and practices are significantly different from and often in opposition to those of the mainstream society. These groups often challenge established societal norms and advocate for alternative lifestyles or beliefs. Counterculture is expressed in various forms, including popular culture.

Counterculture became critical in contemporary Hausa media anthropology because of the rapid rise and adoption of visual technologies through social media by Hausa youth of all shades—male, female and often transitioning or LGBT+. The visibility in social media provides Hausa youth with a paradoxical cloak of invisibility, in what I refer to as ‘invisible visibilities.’ They visually, boldly and unapologetically appear brash, aggressive, suggestive, sexual, assertive and insouciant. For the most part, we don’t know who they are, despite seeing them and applauding, hailing, hating or cursing them.

The rise and popularity of social media provided Hausa youth with a perfect visual counterculture template. Crude at the beginning, but getting sophisticated as time flies. Initially restricting themselves to the ‘big’ social media – YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat—the arrival of more flexible platforms, mainly TikTok, Reels, gave the freedom to let loose creative energies.

YouTube provided the first explicit platform. It led to the emergence of what I call ‘Hausa Adult Influencers’ They included Muneerat Abdulsalam, Yasmin Harka, Laure Jibiya, Ummi Zandar, Tani Harka 24, etc. They dispense raw explicit advice on heterosexual adult relationships; Laure Jibiya, possibly a pseudonym, was the only one who dispenses her advice from an Arabian face veil, making it difficult to identify her. Ummi Zinder uses a name that has possible connotation to nudity: Hausa zindir; but could also be a referent to Zinder, the Nigeriène city, locally called Damagaram. Falmati Chadi, again like others, without any other traceable history, would appear to come from Chad Republic.

Obviously, each approaches her broadcast—all in the Hausa language—with a script, a production schedule, and a series of technical and editing equipment, all put together by a person who acts as a director. The large numbers of views generated by these channels are completed by internet bots that rip the audios from the videos and make it easy for users to download the voices without having to log on to the video channel – which saves data, and at the same time, enable clandestine engagement with the contents of the channels without the videos.

Of course, they are countless other Hausa-centric YouTube uploads—ranging from music, to short films and comedy skits. Some audaciously affix ‘Kannywood’ to their channels—which is okay since no one owns ‘Kannywood’ as a label for anything. Are these YouTube uploads ‘films?’ Can they be referred to as Kannywood, even if they are NOT necessarily based in Kano or aimed specifically at the markets in Kano?

Enter TikTok and Reels. Millions of videos. Short attention-grabbing dialogues. Some with structured scripts and actors, shooting schedule, clear effective direction and editing, And messages; for it is not all pearls of fun and laughter.

Take Dan Bello. A professional cinematographer and scriptwriter. With world class video and editing equipment, storyline, excellent editing. With script no Hausa filmmaker dare to write or visualize: a critique of society and governance. A 30-second script unraveling over 30 years of spiral corruption and misgovernance. Are we still in Kannywood?

What of Yagamen? Or Murja Ibrahim Kunya. Love her. Hate her. You can’t ignore her. That’s for sure. Capable of evoking almost all emotional ranges: amusement, annoyance, irritation, exasperation, pity, adoration in virtual stand-up monologues. She expresses her thoughts explicitly and does not care whose ox is gored. She has made several allusions to being ‘Kannywood’. Cultural Kannywood will dispute this membership of their hallowed cult. So where do you put Eddie Murphy, Richard Prior, Tracy Morgan, Jamie Foxx, Whoopi Goldberg and other comedians who became some of the biggest names in Hollywood?

And G-Fresh Al-Amin. An excellent rapper whom I mentored once (listen to his ‘Kano to California Remix’). Can he lay claim to Kannywood? Or Hassan Makeup, Sadiqa (previously known as Sadiq) and other influencers with alternative sexualities. Daring to boldly go where no Kannywood producer will dare to go. I know. Purist will claim these are not Kannywood. These social media Hausa alterities lay claim to Kannywood – only that they provide a countercultural narrative. Each skit, monologue provides a story, completing with a marketing structure; for the money is made in the AdSense clicks some have activated. Bringing in few dollars. And no censorship.

If we debunk Hausa counterculture alterities as not being serious, not being ‘films’ in the accepted sense (whose accepted sense?) then how do we explain cinéma vérité? If you have a strong stance on a political or social issue, cinéma vérité is a vehicle to express and defend your opinions. All the Hausa counterculture videographers can be lumped as cinéma vérité—a perfectly valid form of cinematic expression. It combines improvisation with use of the camera to unveil truth or highlight subjects hidden behind reality.

This, of course, excluded religious or journalistic social media as these are focused on a particular topic often in a didactic and linear fashion. Counterculture social media is about rebellion to the established public culture, or teasing out things public culture would rather hide or gloss over in a ‘conventional’ cinematic expression.

TikTokers Khadijah Ibraheem and Anti Hussaina use this technique to criticize—as well as appreciate—boys (“kai, guy ɗin nan ya sha wanka”). And in case you label them something else for expression their frank views, they do so in full Muslim hijab, and all clean dialogue. Not a single swear or foul word. Contrast their dialogue with Murja Ibrahim Kunya – all about female sexuality, but in different delivery modes. Aminu J and Abis Fulani provide critical commentaries on news events. Bilal Villa is transnational in using local resident Lebanese in his dialogues, giving a unique dimension to commentary on Kano society. Still not Kannywood? How about this, then.

One of the craziest aspects of Kano is that even people with clearly mental health issues become celebrities in a process the literature refers to Celebrification. The last three years saw the emergence of Ale (a Kano specific corruption of the word, Alhaji) Rufa’i Bulgates (another corruption, of Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft), the man who created new virtual currencies, ‘Gangalion’ and ‘Americallion’. He uses this currency to buy whole countries. His relatives reported his skit makers to the police and an order was issued banning making any videos of him taking advantage of his gullibility. They started regretting it later, because….

…no sooner had he disappeared from the scene, than another one emerged. Ale Umar Bush. A load-carrier in the Kwanar Singer segment of the Kano Sabon Gari Market. In a short period of time, he became stupendously rich because the way he amuses people with incredibly horrible foul language. I guarantee you, no language provides the most disgusting foul abuses like the Hausa language. This guy knew them all and utters them with relish and stern face. Like a circus performer, he gets invited to meet important people and foreigners, including Arabs and Indians, to be feted for their amusement, with videos taken and sent to their countries: “hey, look, a crazy African.” I once flew in the same plane with him to Abuja where he was invited to provide amusement to people who are presumably mentally healthy, but enjoy teasing a mental patient. Like kids holding a hapless insect in their hands and getting amused at ripping off each of its wings.

Now, he is a film star. Yes, he has just starred in his first 12-minute film, “Sallah Ram Deal in Kano”. It was produced by Abdulgafar Ahmad Oluwatoyin, aka Cuteabiola, a Nollywood comedian, who starred in it. Someone has found a way of weaving a script around a foul-mouthed mental patient and creating amusement for non-mental health people. Cute Abiola himself posted the story on his Facebook timeline. It generated 471 comments, hugely appreciative of this new dimension of Northern Nollywood, and 272 shares. Are we still in Kannywood?

Over the last five years, social media has enabled the creation of Hausa countercultural microcinema—short films, often created with low budgets and minimal equipment, which is a good fit for the brief, often amateur or semi-professional nature of social media videos—and cinéma verité that provide a countercultural narrative to life in both urban and rural Hausa societies. Cinema is multifaceted medium that combines art, technology, and industry to create and share moving images, offering a powerful means of storytelling and cultural expression. Nothing says how long it has to be. Or how expert the cinema maker has to be.

The whole point of my argument is that Hausa social media counterculture skitters, shorties, documentaries, comedies, the whole ball of wax, are increasingly claiming they are also Kannywood. The non-counterculture Kannywood leadership on the other hand struggle hard to create a dividing line. They faced this with the Hiyana incidence in 2007 where virtually every actress is seen as a Hiyana, derailing the image of Kannywood.

 

I will end with the beginning.

What, exactly, is Kannywood?

 

Adamu is a Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at Bayero University, Kano. This was first published on his Facebook account. 

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Opinion

Re:Kano govt. a rendezvous with recklessness and executive rascality

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By Sanusi Bature Dawakin Tofa

I read with utmost bewilderment an article titled: “KANO GOVT: A RENDEZVOUS WITH RECKLESSNESS AND EXECUTIVE RASCALITY.” My greatest surprise is that such a piece of trash is coming from a journalist with self-acclaimed intellect and versatility like Bala Ibrahim. This is what we see in the Fourth Estate of the Realm when veterans who ought to hold on to objectivity are subjected to the whims and caprices of the drowning opposition elements, after eating fat from portions of state funds embezzled by their paymasters while in-charge of the affairs of the state and the commonwealth of the people.

Having dined and wined with the immediate-past administration of Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, who has a number of cases of fraud and corruption to answer, Bala Ibrahim will be the least person to see anything good in the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) administration in Kano, under the able leadership of His Excellency, Alhaji Abba Kabir Yusuf (Abba Gida Gida), the people’s Governor.

Does Bala Ibrahim actually understand the workings of government and governance? This is one question begging for answer. I do not want to go into judicial pronouncements, but the point I want to make clear is that the issue of Kano Emirship is straightforward with the repeal of the Kano Emirate Law (2019), enactment of Kano Emirate Law (2024), which gave Governor Yusuf the POWER to abolish the five Emirates and return Kano to its glorious and historic position of one EMIRATE (this is the wish of the good people of Kano state). The re-appointment of His Highness, Emir Muhammad Sanusi 11 did not also come to anyone as a surprise because his dethronement and consequent banishment by Ganduje and his co-travellers was done out of malice.

Now calling for the arrest of dethroned Emir Aminu Bayero was only done for public good as his entrance into Kano, shortly after his dethronement posed a serious security threat which is being managed up till today. Governor Yusuf remains the Chief Security Officer of Kano state, and no sane leader will fold his arms and watch Kano snowballed into a state of anarchy without taking action.

Again, the demolition of buildings and structures illegally acquired by former Governor Ganduje, his family and friends was an exercise carried out in good faith. It was an exercise pegged on the efforts to recover public property from the hands of very few individuals who believed they can pocket public funds, structures and resources and get away with them without giving a wink. We will not be deterred by propagandists like Bala Ibrahim doing the bidding of their paymasters, at the detriment of the welfare of the good people of Kano state and the socio-economic development of our dear state.

Indeed, it is childish of Bala Ibrahim to keep mentioning the rift between the Deputy Governor, His Excellency, Comrade Aminu Abdulsalam Gwarzo and the National Security Adviser (NSA), Malam Nuhu Ribadu, which has been amicably settled by the two leaders. Who does he want to impress. In times like this, it is common for leaders to have misunderstanding, and also move on after ironing out issues. Now, who is Bala Ibrahim to query the Deputy Governor over his intention to apologise to the NSA in the spirit of brotherhood, and as a devout Muslim?

Bala Ibrahim’s, “rendezvous with recklessness and executive rascality,” will only gain weight and acceptance in the figments of his own imagination, when he has refused of appraise the uncommon achievements of Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf, even in the face of needless distractions by the weakened and frustrated opposition elements.

Recently, Governor Yusuf declared a State-of-Emergency on education in Kano state. This action was taken to revive the state’s education sector which was killed and almost buried by the immediate-past administration. In that occasion, Governor Yusuf made certain revelations on the state of our ailing education sector and what the government is doing to salvage it. Radical but practical measures are being taking to reposition education in our State.

There is no gainsaying the fact that our beloved State is witnessing an alarming proliferation of out-of-school children, (with the current figure standing at 989,234 children of both genders), a situation that threatens to rob an entire generation of their right to education and a brighter future. The statistics are grim and the faces of these children, devoid of the promise of learning, haunt us as a collective failure. Our schools, which should be sanctuaries of knowledge, discipline and growth, are in a deplorable state. Dilapidated infrastructure is a common sight—roofs caving in, walls crumbling, and classrooms that can no longer provide a safe and conducive learning environment. The
lack of instructional materials further
compounds the problem, leaving our teachers and students to struggle with outdated and insufficient resources. Above 4.7Million pupils are sitting on bare floors to take lessons while about 400 schools have only one teacher for all classes subjects and all pupils. Rather than building more classrooms and providing basic furniture in the schools, as well as hiring more teachers, the immediate-past administration chose to butcher the land belonging to those schools, in some places demolishing classrooms to create space for shops. Those schools that they could not sell, they closed them down and got them vandalized

The encroachment of public school lands and the conversion of these vital institutions into private business premises is an affront to our communal values and a direct assault on our commitment to public education. This reckless appropriation of educational spaces for commercial use is unacceptable and Governor Yusuf is ready to stop it no matter whose ass is gored.

In Kano, we have the vast expanse of educational facilities that dotted our landscape including: 7,057 primary schools, 1,148 junior secondary schools, 813 senior secondary schools, and 49 science and technical schools. These numbers, while ostensibly impressive, belie the grim reality that lies beneath the surface. Let us delve deeper, and you will discover disheartening statistics: out of the 42,516 total classrooms available in our basic schools, a mere 22% meet the most basic standards of habitability. Let us pause to contemplate the implications of this revelation. Nearly four out of every five classrooms in our primary and junior secondary schools are marred by dilapidation and disrepair, rendering them unsuitable for the noble pursuit of knowledge.

In our senior secondary schools, the picture remains bleak. Here, less than 30% of classrooms can be deemed habitable, leaving a significant portion of our student population to grapple with inadequate facilities that impede their intellectual growth and development. In our science and technical schools, the bastions of innovation and ingenuity. Unfortunately, the situation here is even grimmer, with less than 20% of classrooms meeting the most basic criteria for habitability. How can we hope to nurture the next generation of scientists and engineers when the very environments in which they are meant to learn are rife with inadequacies and deficiencies?

As part of Governor Yusuf’s commitment to revitalizing education in Kano State, the administration has allocated an unprecedented 29.95% of our 2024 budget to education. This decision is based on the realization that only significant allocation of financial resources would address most of the hydra-headed problems afflicting our educational system, largely centered around under-funding. In his bid to revitalize the basic and post-basic education sub-sectors in the State, Governor Yusuf restored the upkeep and overhead funds for all secondary schools in the State. This injection of funds will enable the
schools to maintain their infrastructure,
procure essential teaching and learning
materials, and ensure the overall conducive teaching and learning environment that our
students deserve.

Furthermore, in recognition of the pivotal role of practical education in nurturing innovative minds, Governor Yusuf has unveiled plans for building an additional 300 state- of-the-art laboratories in 100 schools across the state. The provision of these facilities will provide our students with hands-on experience in scientific inquiry, fostering a culture of experimentation and discovery that is essential for their future
success. This is in addition to another 300 laboratories that will be comprehensively overhauled in 100 secondary schools.

Governor Yusuf’s administration is also constructing 1000 classroom across the State within the next academic session. This measure will, no doubt, mitigate classroom congestion that has become a common feature of most of our schools. He has also directed that all contractors handling inherited abandoned projects in tertiary institutions should go back to site immediately.

Governor Yusuf’s administration’ has also ordered the reopening of all the boarding schools, that were shut down by the immediate past administration. These schools will be reopened and re-boarded within the next academic year. Boarding schools play a crucial role in providing a supportive environment for students, particularly those from remote areas or economically disadvantaged backgrounds. By reopening these institutions, we are expanding access to quality education and creating opportunities for students to thrive academically and sociallly.

One of Governor Yusuf’s vision statement is to make, “Every School, a good school.” He intends to make every public school in the state a good school with decent and standard infrastructure for teaching and learning as well as adequate, qualified and well-motivated teachers and support staff. Already, he has approved for the comprehensive renovation of all primary and junior secondary schools in all the 44 Local Government Council. This renovation will include providing students seats, painting, refurbishing toilets and staff offices. This exercise will be completed in the next two academic sessions. CRC, Kwankwasiyya, Lafiya Jari, and Kano Pro-PA will be responsible for handling minor repairs while Ministry of Education and SUBEB will shoulder all major repairs through competitive bidding.

The next statement of vision is: “Every child, enrolled in school.” In essence this is our expression of commitment to clear all out of school children from our streets and get them enrolled in schools. To achieve this, we must first of all provide classroom accommodation to house all the 989,234 out-of-school children in the State. A total of 28,264 classrooms will be built in the next three years across the State. The Ministry of Education and SUBEB will supervise the issuance of the works through competitive bidding while the Ministry for Project Monitoring will monitor execution and compliance.

The next statement in the vision is: “Every student, an engaged learner”
This requires the provision of modern, state-of- the-art teaching support services and tools. To keep pupils in schools and attentive in their classrooms, we would commence the distribution of one-meal per pupil per day in all primary schools. This would be a joint effort between state government, local government, development partners, philanthropists and host communities. Already, the Community Reorientation Committee (CRC) of the state has been directed to commence preparation and the hiring of cooks for the home-grown school feeding program. We would also re-introduce the distribution of free uniforms to all primary I pupils in all our primary schools.

During his tenure, His
Excellency, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso selected some private Universities across the country where scores of our students were sponsored for their first degree. Although these students graduated with good results, the immediate past administration refused to settle their tuition fees and left them for four years without being able to participate in the one year mandatory youth service scheme. Governor Yusuf has settled all the tuition fees and they have collected their certificates. The Universities include: Bells University Otta, Crescent University, Abeokuta, ABTI University, Yola, Igbenidion University, Okada and Al- Qalam University, Katsina.

Governor Yusuf adminstration met
a backlog of liability of examination fee to the tune of over N1.3billion which have been paid and got Kano State students registered for NECO and NBAIS. Alhamdulillah! This year, Goverjor Yusuf administration has approved for the payment of NECO and NBAIS registration fees to the tune of over N2.9Billion for 121,597 students that have four Credits in their Qualifying Examination in our public schools. This is apart from restoration of foreign scholarship programmes where Kano indigenes are currently doing their second degree studies in India, Egypt and other parts of the world.

Relating to health, Governor Yusuf administration has restored the Hasiya Bayero Pediatric hospital. The renovation of Nuhu Bammalli, Bela, and Nassarawa Specialist hospitals are ongoing. The free Pediatric and Maternity care programmes have also been restored. The Murtala Specialist hospital has been renovated. Ambulances have been distributed across the 44 Local Government Areas for easy movement of patients to hospitals across the state. Indeed, hospital renovations and restorations contribute to healthcare infrastructure development. Free Pediatric and Maternity care aligns with adequate health service delivery. Ambulance distribution supports emergency healthcare.

In human capital development, Governor Yusuf has restored the free weddings sponsorship. Over N4 billion was allocated for procurement of palliatives which are shared to the less privilege people across the 44 Local Government Areas of the state irrespective of political and religious affiliations. Islamic study schools have been reopened. Technical Colleges and Skills Acquisition Centres have also been reopened. It is important to note that free weddings and empowerment programmes contribute to social well being of the people, palliative allocations addresses economic vulnerability, while re-opening of educational and skill acquisition Centres align with human capital development.

In infrastructural development, Governor Yusuf has commenced renovation and construction of abandoned roads across the state. Street lights have been restored in streets across Kano metropolis, bringing down the wave of crime and as well, beautifying our great state, particularly in the night. Governor Yusuf has also commenced the construction of two mega flyovers that will ensure traffic decongestion and give Kano its pride of place as a mega commercial city. The administration is also ensuring renovation of many government infrastructures and restoration of clean and portable water supply. There is no gainsaying the fact that infrastructural development contribute to economic development. Street lights enhance urban infrastructure, while adequate water supply aligns with sustainable development.

Space may not allow me to mention all that have been achieved in agriculture, Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) drive, establishment of the state Gross Domestic Product (GDP) under the state Bureau of Statistics, strengthening the Kano Bureau of Statistics to report monthly inflation rates and consumer Price index, updating of the social register, overhaul of the state civil service, prompt payment of civil servants salaries and pensions to pensioners which recently earned Governor Yusuf award as the best pension-friendly Governor, recruitment and training of over 2, 600 civil servants, among others.

There is a saying that, “any government without criticism is dead before it begins.” Governor Yusuf’s administration’ welcomes and appreciates criticism, but frowns at critics like Bala Ibrahim who are always induced by slices of bread laced with butter and a cup of tea with too much sugar. I urge him to take a deep look at Governor Yusuf’s uncommon style of governance and imagine how it will restore the lost glory of Kano within the next four years, and beyond.

Sunusi Bature Dawakin Tofa is the spokesperson to Governor Yusuf/ Director-General, Media and Public Relations, Government House, Kano

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