Ganduje: Goodbye to the people’s governor in whom I find a father, mentor- Aminu Dahiru Ahmad
By Aminu Dahiru Ahmad
By Aminu Dahiru Ahmad
On Monday, May 29, 2023, His Excellency Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje will bow out, after meritorious service of two successful tenures of eight years as the Executive Governor of Kano State.
While I will leave office, too, before then as a special assistant to the governor on photography, I have to confess that it’s a sweet-bitter experience.
Governor Ganduje has touched many lives including mine. But being loyal and committed has endeared me to the governor, which I am very proud of.
My relationship with Governor Ganduje, which began as a working relationship, i.e., a principal-subordinate relationship, has affectionately transformed into a fatherly relationship. Ganduje is a great mentor.
On one hand, I am excited that Ganduje has come, saw, and conquered. His footprints in infrastructural and human developments ranging from his health and education revolutions to economic development, and transportation reform would continue to adorn the “Centre of Commerce”.
However, I am partly sad because Kano State would miss a patriotic citizen who has sacrificed a lot to take the state to a greater height. Governor Ganduje started at the beginning. He hit the ground running as soon as he was sworn in as the executive governor of Kano State in 2015.
He rolled up the sleeves of his shirt and began to work. The result of Ganduje’s acumen is that the state is now a megacity comparable to anywhere in the world. Thanks to Baba Ganduje’s ingenuity and his passion for the State.
Ganduje met the Kano project disjointed and disheveled, but within the space of fewer than eight years, he combined various development elements and perfected the project.
Here is Kano towering above its peers. One interesting thing is that the more you interact with Governor Ganduje the more you are schooled in politics, governance and administration, and the art of living; most importantly you learn some character-building traits: endurance, courage, patriotism, self-reliance, etc.
WHAT DO I KNOW?
I am in a position to speak on the true character of Abdullahi Ganduje, having worked closely with him for many years. Sometimes only sleep separates me from him. I also traveled alongside different states of the federation and tapped from his wealth of experience. Ganduje works round the clock.
Governor Ganduje is a complete gentleman. He is patient as well as accommodating. This is a man you will wrong today, immediately forgives and forge ahead. And life continues. Taunt Ganduje, he will not raise an eyebrow. Baba Ganduje is a kind of shock absorber. His in-built accommodating nature contributes to the peaceful Kano State.
Religiously Ganduje is a moralist. He would consult Islamic clerics before taking any decision, whether in health, economy, or education. They are the custodians of public morality and Ganduje holds them in high esteem. Clerics had never been given such pride of place in the state.
Years before he became governor, Baba Ganduje had converted thousands of people to the religion of Islam. He organized tens of prayer sessions. I believe this is a continuous project. He converted thousands more in the eight years he has spent as the governor.
POLITICS WITHOUT BITTERNESS
One of the precedents Ganduje set in the eight years he has spent governing Kano State is politics without bitterness. He related well even with members of the opposition parties in the state in specific and in the country at large.
When he was returned as the duly elected governor of the state in 2019 he promised a government of unity and fulfilled that promise by appointing members of the opposition parties into key positions.
Ganduje never witch-hunted anybody, despite the humongous infractions committed by the preceding administration. He knows he is not infallible. For this, he did not waste time on unnecessary vendettas.
However, he completed all the projects he inherited from the previous administration and executed new ones. In terms of infrastructural development in the history of Kano State, Ganduje is second to none.
BETWEEN GANDUJE AND HIS ADVERSARIES
A successful man will never be alone. He attracts friends as well as enemies. Enduring experience, tolerance, and friendliness have fetched Ganduje life-long friends from almost every corner of the country. In another breath, his adversaries are after him for two reasons: Ganduje is a self-made man, meaning he worked assiduously for every inch of his success. He is a man you can’t silence or intimidate.
Second, his adversaries are afraid that his towering achievements are eclipsing theirs. They want to personalize the state, but Ganduje has his way.
Here is a governor who would tap you on the back for the same action others would rebuke you.
GANDUJE IS NOT A MEAN MAN
Tolerance and empathy described Abdullahi Umar Ganduje the most. All of the years i spent under Ganduje i know that he has a good working relationship with his subordinates. His cabinet is the liveliest. He would celebrate and sympathize with each of the members.
As i say goodbye to the people’s governor, I don’t mean this will be the end. I will remain loyal.
As the Legendary Mahatma Gandhi once said, “There are no goodbyes for us, wherever you are, you will always be in my heart”. So, I only mean may God the Almighty be with you Baba as you embark on another phase in your life.