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How bureaucracy is frustrating ace Kano craftsman

Hassan’s ordeal is hinged basically on the lack of motivation from the government and the society at large. “I went as far as Saudi Arabia…

Hassan’s ordeal is hinged basically on the lack of motivation from the government and the society at large.

“I went as far as Saudi Arabia to learn local technology and came back with lots of knowledge that could help address unemployment in the country but unfortunately, my talent is just wasting away and this is basically due to lack of support from the government and members of the society,” he said.

He said it baffles him knowing the rate at which Nigerians rush for Chinse products saying he has the conviction that he, in collaboration with other youths, can produce better gadgets and crafts in terms of both quality and finishing.

“I have the conviction that the knowledge I have on local technology if improved by that of others and shared with other people can go a long way in addressing the issue of unemployment among youths and also boost the economy of the country. But unfortunately, I lack the basic support and encouragement to showcase my contribution to doing that. I also have the conviction that these youths are ready to learn and move out of poverty and idleness which leads them to political thugs in the society but the support is nowhere to be found,” Hassan said.

He believed that if only he learnt music, he might have been one of the top rated artistes in the country saying, it appears musicians get better support and attention from both the government and society in general.

“Maybe if it were music I learnt, I would have reached stardom by now considering the kind of support rendered musicians in this society and the world at large but the fact that I learnt something different and God, in his wisdom, bestowed in me the zeal and enthusiasm to impact the knowledge to others and to move the country forward technologically, I am here crying out for basic support with very little hope for such to be realized. Wallahi! If only attention is given to local technology, not much will be needed for Nigeria to be among the world technologically leading countries but it’s really unfortunate,” he laments.

He said his kind of talent and creativity is only deemed important when there is any expo or competition his state, Kano, is partaking in. “Another unfortunate thing is that we craftsmen are only considered important when there is any exhibition or trade fair the state is taking part in. It is then we become the most important people. And another baffling thing is the way the state officials show they are so proud of us during such events.

“I can still remember that Kano emerged victorious at so many instances and the victory was as a result of the things we presented. Things like the locally made fountain which people gaped and wondered at the way it operates. People also wonder on the technique used in creating an electric bulb in water which has been tested and proven to be safe and attractive but all that we get from the government is empty promises whereby we are only contacted when next the state will take part in another expo,” he said. 

Other technologies Hassan innovated include rechargeable lamps, popcorn making machines, sweets making machines, decorative items made from sticks and pieces of broom sticks and many more.

Describing one of his most fascinating creations, the local fountain, Hassan said, “The fountain which is one of my delights is made by mounting a traditional clay pot on an artificial tree while I mount another pot on a basket facing upright in the direction of the tree-top pot. The greatest wonder on how it operates is the way the water continuously pours into the lower pot without filling it up and this is done by placing a kettle of water under the basket while the lower pot is perforated. The water is connected between the two pots by a connecting pipe between them and once the fountain is on, the water keeps circulating without filling up the lower pot or pouring away.”

According to him, he gets the inspiration his from imagination and sometimes in his sleep. ‘” Apart from the basic things I learnt during my training in Saudi, I mostly get the inspiration from imagination and when I eventually create such item out of curiosity, they appear to be wonderful. Some other times, I get inspired in my dreams so I think my talent is God given and I thank Him for that while I cry out for support to fully utilize the talent.”

Abdu Mohammed is the Executive Director, Kano State History and Culture Bureau. When contacted on the accusation by Hassan, he acknowledged that the craftsman represents the state in expositions. But he said the major problem regarding the support Hassan is complaining about lies with the fact that he has failed to understand the bureaucracy in government dealings.

“I am aware of the person you are talking about and at the same time acknowledge his contribution to the state during expositions but the issue is that he was supposed to write to the governor through my office reminding him of the promise made and as usual the letter has to follow the appropriate channel before reaching the governor. His problem is that he thinks things will happen through mere verbal arrangements with the bureau. I am sure that he will get the necessary support so long as he follows the proper channel,” Mohammed said.

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