The Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) Kano state branch honoured its former chairman, Professor Yusuf M. Adamu. The event which took place on 6th January, 2013 at Murtala Muhammad Library Complex, Kano, was organised in order to celebrate the promotion of the former chairman to the rank of Professor of Medical Geography by the Governing Council of Bayero University, Kano. Professor Yusuf M. Adamu who is a bilingual writer, writes in Hausa and English languages. His works include Idan So Cuta Ne, Maza Gumbar Dutse, Ummul Kahiri, Litters, Landscapes of Reality, Animal in the Neighbourhood, Butterfly and other Poems, They Can Speak English, and A Flat World.
The programme was very eventful and coloured with a reading session, drama, goodwill messages and presentation of a merit award. Most notable among dignitaries at the occasion include Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu, the Vice Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano Professor Abubakar Rasheed mni, MFR who was represented by Professor Sadiq Isa Radda, (the Deputy Vice Chancellor [Admin.]); the National President of ANA Professor Remi Raji represented by Dr. Wale Okediran, Professor Isa Mukhtar, Professor Baffa Aliyu Umar, Dr. Aliyu Ma’azu, ANA Kano Chairman; Ismail Bala, the Executive Director of Kano State Censorship Board, represented by Kabiru Abdullahi, Auwalu Y. Hamza, Ado Ahmad Gidan Dabino, Alh. Haruna Balarabe, Dr. Bala Muhamad, Balaraba Ramat Yakubu, Maryam Ali Ali, Binta Rabiu Spikin, Abdulhakim Ibrahim and many other distinguished guests.
In his welcome address the Chairman of ANA Kano, Ismail Bala congratulated the celebrant for achieving the highest academic title and also thanked him for his contributions toward the development of the Association. The Chairman called to other members, to give their continuous support as the former chairman, who had played a central role in the formation of ANA Kano. The Chairman also sent the Association’s appreciation to its members such as Engr. Y.Z Yau, Dr. Faruk Sarkin Fada, Aliyu Abubakar and others, through whose support was actualised.
Of course I agree with the Chairman that the Professor Yusuf M. Adamu is one of the figures that brought the existence of ANA Kano and also invited many writers into its Umbrella. I happen to know ANA through Professor Yusuf M. Adamu, when he first invited me to attend their literary event to mark the Sallah celebration at Gidan Dan Hausa in 1996. Many people we have started together are no longer interested or are busy in other areas that diverted their attention.
The fruits of what the present members are enjoying in the Association are the labour of Professor and his colleagues such as Maigari Ahmed Bichi and Auwalu Y. Hamza. The kind of mentoring and support they have offered to young writers are part of what has led to the discovery of more writers in the State.
The Chairman of the occasion, Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu, commended the Association for celebrating the achievement of an icon in Nigerian literature and a promoter of cultural development. To him, the attainment of Professorship by Yusuf M. Adamu would give him independence to spread his tentacles into other areas of interest apart from his area of specialisation. He recounted to the audience, how Professor Yusuf M. Adamu introduced him into the field of cultural development. Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu who is now a leading pundit in this area, is playing an important role in the development of literature, music and the Hausa film industry.
Professor Abdalla identified the change of administration in Bayero University, Kano as what brought Yusuf Adamu to this position. The University now allows for cross fertilisation of knowledge that encourages multi-disciplinary scholars. He saw Yusuf Adamu as someone that broke through to other disciplines, and that is why Brian Larkin labelled him as a “Cultural Activist”
Professor Abdalla called the celebrant, “the Abubakar Imam of 21st century, the new icon on cultural desktop and a freedom fighter.” He recognised Adamu’s Professorship as the declaration of total independence. The Professor finally thanked Bayero University, Kano for creating the atmosphere.
Members of the Association staged a drama with leadership as a central theme to commemorate the day. The drama which portrayed the leadership of past EXCO, calls for the new EXCO of the Association to display a good leadership that will bring positive change.
After the drama presentation, readings were taken from members in Hausa and English languages. The presentations were largely poems and short stories on the celebrant’s life and behaviour. Some of the presentations include “Aikin Malamin Jami’a” by Danladi H. Zakariyya, “Alhajin Koko Ko Alhajin Zuru” by Lawal Adamu Giginyu, “Your Name Echoes” by Zaharaddeen Ibrahim Kallah, “Shehun Malami” from Zulkifl A.G Dakata, “Farfeshiya” by Isa Muhammad Inuwa, “Gatan Marubuta” by Nasiru G. Ahmad ‘Yan Awaki, “My Pen Again” by Yaseer Kallah, “It is you I adore” from Ibrahim Shu’aibu, “Babban Gwani” by Adamu Yusuf Indabo and “Faces in the Streets” by Maryam Ali Ali. The reading session was concluded with a presentation of Hausa poetry titled “Taya Murna” by Aminuddeen Ladan Abubakar (ALA).
In a goodwill message, honourable Dr. Wale Okediran who represented the National President of ANA also shared his knowledge of Professor Yusuf Adamu. He mentioned the time he was first hosted in Kano when ANA organised a workshop for Hausa writers that took place at Rock Castle Hotel, Tiga in 2001. According to him Professor Adamu was then the coordinator of the programme, and he was the first to introduce him to Kano by assigning his brother to take him round the Kano city. I can exactly recall those days because I was opportuned to attend the workshop, and it was also the first time for me to know Dr. Wale Okediran. At that time we had a conversation on the wonderful structure of the Rock Castle Hotel that was built on rock by the former Governor of Kano, late Audu Bako. I gave him the history of the hotel and he was so amazed with the structure built in the outskirt of the state. He and former National Financial Secretary, Lukman Sanusi demanded to see more of Kano city. Professor Yusuf M. Adamu assigned late Usman M. Adamu of blessed memory to take them to Kano city. Honourable Dr. Wale Okediran also read from a collection of poetry Verses in Absentia written by late Aisha Usman Bugaje to bless the occasion.
The Vice Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano commended the programme for honouring one of the staff of the University, who is a great asset to them. According to the Vice Chancellor, the University has geared itself towards staff development. The openness of his administration gave equal opportunity to its staff, and this will no doubt improve the standard and rating of the University. According to him, the increase in number of Professors in various Departments of the University can attest to the rapid development taking place.
Of course the Vice Chancellor is right, Bayero University, Kano is taking a new shape of development, and this made it possible for the University to maintain its first ranking as the best University in Nigeria based on NUC accreditation. In terms of structures, the ten years Alumni students of the Bayero University won’t recognise his department or may be confused because of the development. Congratulations Bayero University, Kano.
A former Commander of Nigerian Civil Defence Corps in Katsina, Alhaji Haruna Balarabe shared with the audience, the contributions of the celebrant at the community level. He said, the celebrant is an indigene of Zamfara born in Katsina and brought-up in Kano, but his community services went round to all the states including Sokoto where he earned his first degree. He finally congratulated the celebrant and urged him to continue with the good work.
The Executive Director of Kano State Censorship Board joined in congratulating and commending the celebrant. According to him the Association and the Board are partners in business, and they will continue to give their necessary support to promote literature in the state.
Ahmed Alkanawy in his goodwill remarks said the gathering is an indication that the celebrant is a man of the people, considering the large turnout, in a situation where the celebrant was neither a money tag, nor a political office holder.
Professor Isa Mukhtar who also blessed the occasion, thanked Allah for showing him the day that his student attained the rank of a Professor. The old Professor taught Yusuf Adamu at Usman Dan Fodiyo University, Sokoto. He also acknowledged his contribution in the area of Hausa literature even when he was an undergraduate student. Professor Isa Mukhtar was known as one of the teachers and mentors of writers in the state who support their creative works.
Other important dignitaries gave their goodwill messages. Among them there were two former chairmen of the Association, namely, Auwalu Y. Hamza and Ado Ahmad Gidan Dabino; there was also Dr. Faruk Sarkin Fada.
The Association presented a Merit Award for Visionary Leadership and Outstanding Service to Professor Yusuf M. Adamu. While presenting the award, the Vice Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano represented by DVC Admin. congratulated the celebrant and urged him to continue with the task ahead.
The celebrant, Professor Yusuf M. Adamu thanked the Association for acknowledging his contribution and for giving him the merit award. The Professor stated that one cannot build a house and allow it to be destroyed, therefore he reemphasised his commitment to continue supporting the Association.
The Vice Chairman (ANA Kano) Alhaji Badamasi S. Burji on behalf of the Association thanked the special guest, guests of honours and other guests who spared time to attend the programme. He prayed to Almighty Allah to safely deliver the guests to their destinations. The programme was ended with a closing prayer by Dr. Bala Muhammad.
Zaharaddeen Ibrahim Kallah is the branch Secretary of the Association of Nigerian Authors, Kano State Branch. firstname.lastname@example.org