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Abubakar Hashidu (1944-2018)

Former governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Abubakar Habu Hashidu, died on 27 July 2018 in his house in Gombe after a protracted illness.

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President Muhammadu Buhari, in his condolence message, prayed that the Almighty God would grant the soul of the former governor eternal rest and comfort the family he left behind and said the wealth of experience and innovative thinking that the deceased brought to the Nigerian economy remains commendable.

The President joined family members, friends, professional and political associates of the former governor in mourning, adding that the country would sorely miss the wise counsels of the revered politician.

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Also, former Military President, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, in his condolence, described the death of Alhaji Abubakar Habu Hashidu as a great loss not only to Gombe State but Nigeria in general.

He said: “Alh. Abubakar Habu Hashidu, has been a trusted ally and a technocrat per excellence that became an asset to my administration in the development of river basins as well as national water resources management in the country”.

General Babangida also described late Hashidu as “a political ideologists and a pragmatic politician that accepted the will of the people by conceding defeat in the 2003 election and congratulated the winner.”

Born on 10 April 1944, at Hashidu village in Dukku LGA, Abubakar Hashidu was elected governor under the platform of the defunct All Peoples Party (APP) in 1999.

Before his election in 1999, Hashidu had served as Minister of Water Resources and Minister of Agriculture Rural Development during the administration of General Ibrahim Babangida.

He was however not re-elected in 2003, as he lost his re-election bid to Danjuma Goje of the People’s Democratic Party PDP. Hashidu re-contested in 2007 under the platform of the Democratic People’s Party (DPP), but lost again to the same Danjuma Goje.

In March 2007 Abubakar Hashidu was arrested and put on trial over violence that allegedly broke out after he started his political campaign. Armed supporters stormed the magistrate’s court, freeing Hashidu and in the process wounded the judge presiding over his case.

He was also a member of the Vision 2010 committee set up by General Sani Abacha to chart a developmental road-map for the country.

Hashidu, who was instrumental to the creation of Gombe State, was a man who had contributed positively to the development of the state, he was also a symbol of unity in the state, a fatherly figure, and a man of peace.

As the first Executive Governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Hashidu had brought to bear his wealth of experience in laying the foundation for the development of the then new state and distinguished himself as a man of vision and a pace setter. His four year tenure witnessed execution of people oriented projects and programmes as well as remarkable promotion of harmony and peaceful coexistence among the diverse people of the state.

In his daily political life, Abubakar Hashidu was forthright, tolerant and just, he lived a most fulfilled life and has firmly stamped his footprints in the sands of Nigeria’s nascent democracy.

The former Gombe state governor’s commitment to principle stands him out as a paragon and personification of integrity and truly a man of rare embodiment of integrity, fearlessness and frankness.

The late Hashidu epitomized simplicity and excellence, and has, against all odds, bequeathed a legacy of humility, honesty and courage, and also exhibited a dedication and abiding faith in Nigeria and a desire to ensure that justice and equity prevails.

His death is a great loss to the country. He is survived by his wife, Hajiya Aishatu, eight children and many grandchildren. Our heartfelt condolence goes to the family of the deceased and to the government and people of Gombe State.

We pray to the Almighty Allah to forgive his sins and grant him eternal rest and give the family fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.

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