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Shekarau at 65

Today, November 5, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau, two-time governor of Kano State, the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) presidential candidate in the 2011 elections, former Minister…

Today, November 5, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau, two-time governor of Kano State, the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) presidential candidate in the 2011 elections, former Minister of Education, and currently the Senator representing Kano Central in the red chamber, turned 65.

Possibly, no form of government needs great leaders as much as democracy. For democracy is not self-executing – it takes leadership a lot to bring democracy to life.

Great democratic leaders are visionaries – with the instinct for their society’s future – a course to steer and through the capacity for persuasion, they win people’s consent.

Senator Ibrahim Shekarau could not have come at a better time than this – as it is a galvanisation, compilation and presentation of a leader of humble origin.

His career in politics, which debuted in 2003 is honestly one of the most inspiring, captivating and motivating in recent Nigeria’s memory.

The trip to his political debut seventeen years back began – of course – nearly 48 years earlier when he was born. He is the son of Malam Shekarau and Malama Maryam. The father – who died in 1979, was originally from Biu, Borno State – settled in where he joined the then Native Authority Police and attained up to the rank of a chief inspector before he retired. The mother of Shekarau, who was from Gundumawa village of Gezawa Local Government of Kano State died in 1998.

After his formal education with a degree in Mathematics/Education from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1977, he joined Kano State bureaucracy in 1978  as a secondary school teacher. He began a successful career in the civil service, which he was principal at many secondary schools in Kano – to an education administrator and much later he eventually retired as a permanent secretary in 2001.

His secret weapon as the governorship aspirant of the opposition ANPP at that time seemed to have been his humility, simplicity and eloquence as a former teacher.

Malam Ibrahim Shekarau is a bold, articulate and forthright public speaker who never minces his words. He speaks with a faint posh English accent.

Shekarau as an underdog defeated Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, the incumbent governor in the 2003 election. And from the political history of the good people of Kano, seem to always love the underdog.

Elected as Kano State governor in 2003 after a long but varied public career. On assumption of office, Kano State started to record tremendous achievement in the general development of both human and material resources.

Four years later as governor of Kano State, it was crystal clear  his works and record had met the expectations of the good people of the state.

The good people of Kano state re-elected Malam Ibrahim Shekarau whose personality is responsible for mobilisation of democratic energies and faith that will bring people together and forge ahead a new course.

The visions of Shekarau that are being translated into tangible programs and the actions have within the short span of the eight years given Kano peculiar dynamic and focus.

These qualities galvanised and prepared Shekarau as the presidential candidate for the ANPP in the 2011 polls. Polls, of course, are won and lost through the ballot boxes. Shekarau emerged fourth after Jonathan, Buhari and Ribadu.

Shekarau endeared himself to the people because through his up-bringing and style he believed and fought the cause of the generality of his people. His views on some major issues currently in the red chamber are constructive and provided some meaningful insights into his thinking and contention.


Muazu Muazu. ([email protected])

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