During the first tenure of the administration of His Excellency, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, OFR from May 29, 2015 to May 29, 2019, a deliberate policy on the provision of infrastructures in both urban and rural areas of Kano State was vigorously pursued to the admiration of a large section of the populace which included the construction and reconstruction of roads, flyovers, underpasses and bridges for the smooth movement of persons, goods and services with a view to catapulting the state’s economy to greater heights. The resounding successes the policy had recorded led to the equally resounding victory of Governor Ganduje during this year’s national elections conducted in the state, with the APC winning all the 24 House of Representatives, three senatorial and 27 State House of Assembly seats.
Many of these gargantuan projects have already been completed, which include Madobi-Panshekara road junction underpass, which, to the best of my knowledge, is the first of its kind in the whole northern region initiated by a state government; Murtala Muhammad Way flyover inherited from the immediate past administration at less than 25% execution level which later gulped the sum of over N10 billion and Katsina Road underpass; Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, Giginyu; Sheikh Isyaku Rabi’u Paediatric Hospital, Zoo Road; an ultra-modern vocational skills acquisition centre along Zaria Road, and a host of others.
Others like the Dangi Roundabout flyover/underpass project, being executed at the cost of about N5 billion and Kofar Mata flyover which was awarded at the cost of N15 billion, are on-going which upon completion will further transform the landscape of the ancient city of Kano thereby improving commercial activities the city has been known for many centuries.
It is in appreciation of the commendable commitment to the provision of sundry road infrastructures in all the nooks and crannies of Kano State, the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) conferred an award on His Excellency, the Executive Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, OFR during its 30th year anniversary celebrations which led to significant reduction of traffic accidents in the state.
This is apart from the immense appreciation of the numerous benefitting communities, especially those who hitherto were experiencing transportation problems like traffic jams and inaccessibility by those in far-flung rural areas. To call this a succour to these long-suffering communities is to state the obvious. In fact, the provision of access roads in the agrarian rural communities has boosted agricultural activities and improved the income of the rural dwellers who are mostly small-scale farmers and pastoralists. In addition, Kano State has been enjoying relative peace and security since the inception of the present administration and the implementation of this policy is partly responsible.
However, the opposition elements under many guises like the so-called “Concerned Citizens” have seen nothing commendable in the execution of these infrastructures which are aimed at transforming Kano into a mega city. These elements see nothing good in the administration of His Excellency, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje and by extension the federal government under President Muhammadu Buhari as they are blinded by self-serving political ambition.
But having known their antics, Gov. Ganduje vowed to remain focused, committed and undaunted as he is fired by the zeal and passion to serve his people and no amount of unjustified criticisms from any quarters will deter him in the pursuit of his administration’s various people-centred policies and programmes for the overall development of the most populous state in the federation. And these laudable achievements recorded in various fields of human endeavours have paid up in the resounding victory Gov. Ganduje and his party recorded in the recent national polls leaving the opposition with mere crumps despite their dogged campaigns of calumny against the governor, his administration and even his family members!
Now in his second tenure, our amiable governor has promised to consolidate on the numerous achievements recorded in the last four years. In his inaugural speech on 29th May, 2019, His Excellency categorically stated that:
“As a government, we have a clear vision of what we plan to do in the next four years. It is to enthrone a legacy of prosperity for all our people. We are committed to the building and consolidation of a state in which there shall be effective health and educational systems, a flourishing agriculture and agribusiness sector, integrated rural development, renewed urban infrastructure, more employment opportunities, enhanced security and peace to bolster economic growth and development.”
Education took a center-stage of the administration during the first tenure during which the Ganduje administration sponsored thousands of foreign and internal students, embarked on the construction of infrastructures to decongest classrooms, provided learning and teaching materials to public schools at all levels, promoted thousands of primary school teachers and employed many more. In fact, only the education and health sectors were exempted from the state government’s policy on the embargo of employment. Even last year, 1,000 female NCE teachers were employed to teach at primary schools in all the 44 local government areas of the state.
Still on education, the governor stated in his inaugural speech that:
“In line with our earlier position in my victory speech, government will make basic and post-basic education free and compulsory to all citizens of Kano State while on the other hand tertiary education will remain highly subsidized. In the same vein, education is today declared free at all levels for all the physically challenged persons including tertiary institutions. Detailed policy guidelines from government for the implementation of the free education policy will be provided in due course.”
There is no doubt that the education sector, more than any other sector in the country, requires colossal amount of human, material and financial resources to resuscitate, which informed the decision of the administration of Gov. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje to continuously commit huge resources to ensure its turn-around to the administration and commendation of many stakeholders.
For example, during the first tenure, the state government consistently paid its UBEC counterpart funds for the development of the education sector at the basic level and Kano State is in the forefront of recording this feat in the whole country despite the state’s huge population and monthly wage and pension bill running into over N10 billion.
Having realized that the education sector is the springboard for the sustainable development of any society, the Ganduje administration has continued to give the sector deserved attention and priority since its inception in May, 2015 and the governor has pledged to pursue this policy with vigour and doggedness for the overall development of the most populous state in the federation.
Despite the competing demands of other sectors and the huge monthly wage and pension bill, the Ganduje administration has remained undaunted in the pursuit of its objective of making the education sector one of the best in the country. Indeed, the next four years will witness more development in the sector since it is the life-blood of any society, and Kanawa will indeed catwalk their way into the NEXT LEVEL of development in the State.
Salihu Tanko Yakasai is a former Special Adviser Media to Kano state Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje