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What Double Ministers should do for Kano

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Sabo Nanono and Bashir Magashi

Hisham Habib

When PMB sent the names of his ministerial nominees to the senate for confirmation in July many were surprised and probably taken aback when the names of retired General Bashir Magashi and Alhaji Sabo Nanono were mentioned.

The unexpectedness in the nomination of the duo was coupled with issues in Kano about the major happenings in 2019 elections and its aftermath.

Most of the speculative Kano polity did not expect that, despite President Buhari’s resolve to appoint those he knew well.

Nevertheless the polity continued getting heated over what the two septuagenarians could for their constituency after getting hold of two strategic ministries of Defence and Agriculture respectively.

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Challenges before Magashi

Gen Magashi’s antecedents qualified him for the Defence ministry even before the announcement. Being the only retired army general among the nominees, most Kano residents saw it coming.

Having been in the background after an unsuccessful attempt to govern his own state in the past, the lawyer who once served as legal adviser should be able to learn from the missteps of the former minister from Kano also a retired General Abdurrahman Dambazau who could not return to the next level, partly from his inability to relate with the people and spread the much coveted dividends of democracy to his immediate constituency.

The former General Officer commanding (GOC) who served during the military era of General Sani Abacha should be able to harmonize his task as overseer of the Defense mechanism in the country and his political career that has vividly come to its climax. His efforts must be doubled for him to earn the prestige of being a recognized elder even after his stint in the last lap of the administration.

Nanono must address youths restiveness

For Muhammad Sabo Nanono, the challenge is much higher owing to the fact that Kano is renowned for agricultural potentials yet untapped.

This is an opportunity for the experienced banker to address the issue of youth restiveness through agriculture.

As the most populous state in the country the rate of unemployment has consistently been high and the most ready way of curbing the issue is through agriculture.

Being in the system the new minister is expected as in the words of a Kano based analyst Bashir Gentile “to use his best of ability in delivering the fruits to the society”.

Nanono’s task among others is to bring to the northern parts and Kano its own share of rural development through his office and to ensure that stakeholders are carried along while monitoring with extra concern the work of all representatives in the various sectors.

Immediate intervention

These ministers must know that the people of Kano are watchful as ever for the expected remedies; the voters who came out en masse and consistently voted for President Buhari have their eyes open for a collective transformation of the society not selective adventurism.

Areas needing immediate intervention must be on their priority and as influential office holders the need to work with the state government in fielding out tangible developmental work in areas of human resource utilization is paramount.

It is pertinent to note being themselves Buhari’s personal choice and not directly products of state godfatherism, they  must bear in mind that unnecessary political distractions should be minimized to  allow for the desirable intervention that will check the unabated hardship the Kano people are into especially in the rural areas where  the basic amenities are scarce.

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They must be able to have a collective platform where they can harmonize all efforts to uplift Kano and restore as well as strengthen its dignity as the northern capital of commerce and leadership.

They should also avoid the hosting of sycophants who will block them from realizing the challenges before them until it is too late to cry over spilt milk.

The desired collective platform should not be maneuvered by self-centered opportunists who will undermine all positive efforts to make the society a  better place.

Hisham Habib, journalist and public commentator writes from Kano.

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