In Katsina, Gladiators Jostle for Supremacy
As the race towards 2003, elections gathers momentum, in Katsina State, Jare Ilelaboye, takes a closer look at the array of personalities that may shape the outcome of the polls

As in many other states of the federation, Katsina presents a case of parade of personalities jostling for Supremacy. And as the battle gathers steam, the list of influential personalities are becoming inexhaustive. This is understandable.

Since 1922 when Katsina Government College was established in the ancient city of Katsina, one of the conservative urban city in Hausa/Fulani emirate of Uthman Dan Fodio, many of its indigenes have acquired western education. They have also traversed various parts of the world in which many of its sons and daughters had contributed to the development of such areas.

It would be interesting to note that one of the emirs of Katsina went to Europe to participate in the polo game as Katsina is well known for its polo game activities. Uptil now a Katsina indigene in person of Alhaji Lawal Kaita is still the president of the Nigerian polo association, a game meant for the elites in the society. Whenever one mention Katsina everybody remembers the former emir of the ancient city Alhaji Usman Nagogo.

Apart from the emir, some of its offerings, late general Hassan Katsina and a lot of others still keeps their horses in their home for their children for the polo game.

In matters relating to education, many of the indigene have held several top appointment in both state and federal levels inspite of the fact that education has been relegated to background by some of the current parents in the state who refused to send their children to school but all successive governments in the state have been striving hard to resuscitate education in the state particularly with the creation of Katsina State and who now control what goes on in the state.

During the military administration in the country, one would have noticed that many Katsina indigene were appointed into high posts due to their educational background of which they accrued alot of benefit to the state.

Although the lists of those top elites are endless but some of the them are listed below;

Lawal Kaita
An ex-governor of Kaduna State and a prominent leader of PDP and chairman of Nigerian Maritime Authority who also belong to royal family of Nagogo. He is a staunch supporter of the president Obasanjo.

Justice Mohammed Bello
A former Chief Justice of the federation and chairman of the Katsina State Education Trust Scheme. He is always at home to see things for himself on matters concerning the development of the state.

Umaru Abdullai
He is the Chief Judge of Court of Appeal, Abuja. An influential top shot in the state whose opinions are well respected among elites in the state.

Leman Jibril
A Kaduna based business mogul and one of the top notcher of APP. He was once a presidential aspirant of APP and defunct NRC during the IBB regime in the country. He is a title holder of Katsina emirate council.

Aminu Mekera
A contemporary of Alhaji Amadu Kurfi who hold ache of anybody who want to win any election in the state. He stays at Dutsima town in the state, he is into oil business.

Aminu Safana
Former secretary to the Katsina State government during this Yar'Adua administration. He was one of those who financed the campaign of Yar'Adua election but got removed from office for unknown reasons. He is now a full time farmer but still controls political and economic opinion of the masses in the state. If Safana comes out tomorrow to contact any elective post in the state. he would definitely win such election.

Kabir Yaya
A Pharmacist by profession and well to do on his own right. He is a human right activist and he is always champion the cause of the common people. As at now he is in serious business traversing Europe to get contact for his business.

Zakari Ibrahim
A former top shot in the federal government and once a minister of foreign affairs, he is a member of the emirate council with Talba title of Katsina. He is presently considering going into politics and wherever he goes, he would definitely win such seat in his constituency.

Ibrahim Commaisse
Former inspector general of police and Sardauna of Katsina. He is an influential man in the Katsina emirate council because you will always see him where you see the emir. He is also a publisher of Today Newspaper based in Kaduna.

Ahmed Daura
A retired assistant inspector general of police and now a member of the police service commission. He was military administrator of Yobe State. He only missed to be inspector of police by whisker. He is influential man from Daura emirate of the state.

Saidu barda
Former governor of Katsina State under the NRC platform during the third republic of the caucus of the party in the state.

Bello Dan Kano
A former secretary to the government and a journalist to the core. He rose through the rank in the civil service of Kaduna State as press secretary to the governor of the state, then a state commissioner in the state before he became the secretary to the state government. He attended Kuru, Jos for a course. He is now in the federal ministry of finance director.

Iro Inko
A modest of woman who control large followership of women in the state. She has held many posts in the state but how quiet business woman in the state.

Tukur Mani
A former federal permanent secretary who have made wealth and very influential in the state politics. He is now in business. He now stays at Abuja to control his business.

Bello Ingawa
Former secretary to the government of the state and one of the directors in the federal civil service. He is very consistency in his opinion on mattes concerning the state affairs.

Lami Sada
A brilliant woman who knows what she wants in life. She was once director general in the Katsina State civil service but now in the federal service. She graduated from Ahamdu Bello University (ABU) Zaria in the past.

Yaya Garba
A very brilliant civil servant of repute who does not tolerate nonsense from anybody. He is very hard working and now in the federal civil service in Abuja. He was once permanent secretary in the state civil service before transferring his service to federal level.

Kabir Abubakar
An engineer by profession. He was once a director general in the state agencies. He has transferred his service to federal level. He controls alot of opinion in the state as his house is always Mecca whenever his in Katsina on weekend.

Tanimun Saulawa
Ex diplomat and influential man in the ancient city. He is a senior cousin to major general Ika Nwachukwu, a Senator in the National Assembly. He has held many sensitive posts in the past but now in quiet retirement at home.

Lawal Mashi
A retired police commissioner and now at home finding things to do in retirement. Since he retired, he has kept to himself in his palatial home. One does know whether he would go into politics to test his popularity. He has alot of followership.

Lawal Bagiwa
A retired custom officer and who is not gunning to be the chairman of Mani local council where hails from. He is also the chairman of farmer organisation in the state with alot of supporters. He came to government House to recent with his supporters shouting his praises.

Idris Bagiwa
He is a brother to Lawal who was in the Federal Minister of Education, he was once in their London office after which he became the executive secretary of NPEC with Kaduna headquarters being controlled by the Federal Government.

Mutallab
A former federal commissioner in the past and now a businessman. Obasanjo has alot of respect for him due to his connection.

Ismaila Funtua
Publisher of defunct democrat based in Kaduna. He is now in business in Abuja as the managing director of a construction firm. He has a political ambition but he would never come to his state headquarters whenever he was at home but usually stop at Funtua his home.


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