By Bashir Abdullahi El-Bash
For those in Kano state and those who are coming to Kano for the first time, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje’s sterling performance cannot escape their eyes and attention.
Coming into Kano through the Zaria Road expressway, one cannot miss the imposing mulit-layered and well-structured interchange flyover and underpass bridge at the popular Dangi Roundabout.
This is an impressive landmark that not only welcomes guests to Kano, but also testifies to the outstanding achievements of Governor Ganduje.
Less than two kilometers away from the grand flyover, on the famous Zoo Road, stands another key witness to Governor Ganduje’s work—the Khalifa Isyaku Rabiu Pediatric Hospital, which was swiftly completed and equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment after being abandoned by the immediate past administration of Rabiu Kwankwaso.
Apart from these, there are other infrastructural projects too numerous to mention that have either been completed, nearly completed or being freshly executed by the Ganduje administration.
But we can mention a few examples such as the Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, which was also completed and equipped by the Governor Ganduje.
Currently, a large cancer treatment centre, which is expected to be the second largest in West Africa is being built in the premises of that hospital.
Then there is the 2-km Sabon Gari flyover, the longest in Nigeria, which was left by the previous administration at only 15 percent completion level, but has now been fully completed and put to use by the teeming population of Kano state.
The timely completion of this all-important flyover has brought a multiplier effect of economic development and prosperity that cannot be quantified. The once difficult to access Sabon Gari, Singer and Wapa markets have become easily accessible, thereby boosting the economic activities in the areas and attracting several investments.
This is all apart from the constant empowerment programmes that have benefitted more than ONE MILLION youths—men and women since 2015, when Governor Ganduje first became took the mantle of leadership.
Oops, talking of empowerment programmes, I have almost forgotten to mention the N2.5 billion ultra-modern skills acquisition centre built by Governor Ganduje in Dawakin Kudu local government area of the state.
This centre has been designed to offer 24 different types of trades for the people of Kano state, a move that will undoubtedly help in severely curtailing the rate of youth unemployment in the state.
There are more and more and more projects and programmes initiated by gentleman Governor Ganduje that cannot be exhausted in this short piece!
So, is anyone still in doubt as to why Governor Ganduje won the Award of Excellence as the ‘Best Governor in 100 Days’?
It was not magic, but a product of extraordinary hard work and commitment.
On 8, September, 2019, a pan-African prodemocracy group, African Democracy Assessment Network (ADAN), based in Dakar, Senegal first announced that Governor Ganduje had won its Award of Excellence as the ‘Best Governor in 100 Days’ in office.
The award means that Governor Ganduje outperformed all the 35 other Nigerian state governors in terms of both infrastructural projects, empowerment programmes and good governance.
On September 23, 2019, the group, officially presented the Award to the governor in an event held at the Governor’s Lodge, Asokoro Abuja.
Presenting the Award, ADAN’s Senior Programme Manager Mr Samson Gomina, who represented the West African Regional Coordinator, Mr Samson Theodore, congratulated the governor for passing through the rigorous process and procedures before emerging as the winner among all other governors across the country.
The association according to him “… is an African group, based in Dakar, Senegal, which is dedicated to the promotion of democracy across the shores of Africa. We assess, as the name indicates, how democracy is being practiced in our countries. We have offices in some selected African nations.”
“It is with great pleasure and clear understanding of our responsibility that we are here today, before the Executive Governor of Kano State, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, for the official conferment of Award of Excellence on him, as a result of some carefully analysed achievements recorded under his administration, in the first 100 days of office, since his second inauguration as the governor of Kano state from May 29th, 2019,” he added.
Gomina explained further that, the choice of Ganduje as the best performing governor among all his colleagues across the Nigerian states, was done impartially, adding that the process and procedures followed before they arrived at that point, were just, fair and near academic exercise.
“The achievements recorded under your first 100 days in office, passed through a very stressful, meticulous and cogent examination, before you finally emerged as the winner. Winning the best performing governor is not an easy task,” he said.
“But your achievements made it possible, as a people-centred governor, whose primary constituency is always his people, his people and his people. We say this, because we possess scientific parameters to defend our findings, Your Excellency.”
According to Gomina, ADAN examined some selected sectors and subjected them to tasking and unfettered examination, emphasising that “not only that, we also tried to situate how governors brought forth and maintain public interest as overriding interest in their day to day office and official hours.”
The Senior Programme Manager explained that, after some brainstorming discussions that took place at Dakar, amongst their members after a Mid-Year Democracy Review Meeting, all members agreed to start rating Nigerian governors in areas like education, health agriculture, security, economy, infrastructural development and politics, with concentration on supremacy of political party or parties as the case may be.
“Under education we unanimously commended your unrelenting commitment in moving the sector to greater heights. It is no more a secret that you fast track and facilitated the accreditation of some programmes offered by state- owned tertiary institutions of higher learning.
“Your bringing to forth, of the government’s intent to establish College of Education, (Technical) for Women, is considered by our panel of researchers, as genuine policy pronouncement. This also goes a long way for effective and efficient self-reliance strategy for women. Girl child education in its highest position,” Gomina added.
He said they were amazed that the free and compulsory basic and secondary education policy pronouncement was seriously and genuinely made, which he believed was glaringly manifested in the Summit on Free and Compulsory Basic and Secondary Education, which took place between 3rd to 4th September.
After listing some major achievements recorded in Ganduje administration in the areas of health, security, agriculture and environmental sanitation, the Senior Programme Manager mentioned that:
“We came to understand that the establishment of another four First Class Emirs goes a long way in trickling development down to the grassroots. This is commendable. An action needed for many decades back in the state.
“So, no matter what some opposition voices are grudgingly voicing, the fact remains that, Kano is set for the existence of some few other mega cities apart from the popular Kano Mega City.”
He observed that the establishment of more emirates is indeed taking the state to greater heights of growth and development, in the areas of education, health, security, agriculture, environmental sanitation, provision of social amenities, among others.
“On infrastructural development we do appreciate Dangi Interchange flyover, which reached advance stage and about to be completed. Secondly, the popular Modern Skills Acquisition Centre, which is completed only waiting for commissioning. Kudos to you Your Excellence,” Gomina praised.