Dr. Nasir Idris, Kauran Gwandu: Beckoned to serve people of Kebbi State
By Yahaya Sarki
Since 1999, Nigeria has really been progressing steadily as a democratic nation after several incursions by the military into the political landscape of the country. Happily, there have been various successful and successive civilian-to-civilian transitions. This is a no mean feat achievement by Nigeria to the envy of the doubting Thomases and failed naysayers.
Instructively, 2023 Is epochal as the general elections were successfully conducted at all levels in the world’s most populous black nation, Nigeria.This is really an invaluable achievement in the democratic history of Nigeria.
The happy development is that Nigerians had yet again enthroned a democratically – elected President and his Vice in the persons of Sen. Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Sen. Kashim Shettima, respectively. Same was also historically done in 28 states of the federation, including the Land of Equity, Kebbi State. This resulted in the emergence of an Iconic democrat, veteran labour leader, professional teacher as well as a consummate technocrat, Comrade Dr. Nasir Idris, Kauran Gwandu as the worthy successor to Sen. Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, also a professional Lecturer.
Kebbi State has had many Military Administrators and Governors since it was created on 27 August 1991, when it was split off from the defunct Sokoto State. It is however noteworthy here that the state has maintained a steady trajectory of development as championed by its previous leaders.
The last man standing that had just left triumphantly was Bagudu who successfully handed over to yet another achiever, the Kauran Gwandu. Just like in a four-by-four race, the Kauran Gwandu had just received the baton to take Kebbi State to greater heights.
By way of chronicling his biography, the Kauran Gwandu, Comrade Dr.Nasir Idris, 58 years old, was and is still a trade unionist, educationist and an erudite politician. He had previously served as the National President of the Nigerian Union of Teachers and Deputy President of the Nigeria Labour Congress. On 17th, April 2023, Idris was pronounced winner of the 2023 Kebbi State gubernatorial election by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Dr Nasir Idris was born in Birnin Kebbi, headquarters of Birnin Kebbi Local Government Area of Kebbi State.
In 2018, Idris was elected as NUT President, as well as the Deputy President of NLC as stated earlier. He was also a former Chairman of NUT, Kebbi State, former Chairman of NLC, Kebbi State and former National Treasurer of NUT. In May 2022, Dr Idris emerged as the Kebbi State All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship candidate at the APC Governorship primary election. On 17 April 2023, Idris was declared the winner of the 2023 Kebbi State gubernatorial election by INEC.
History was therefore made on Monday, 29th of May, 2023 when the Kauran Gwandu was sworn in as the democratically-elected Governor of Kebbi State at Haliru Abdu Stadium, Birnin Kebbi filled to capacity by people from near and far to witness this unique day in the history of the Kebbi State. He had really been sworn in for the job as the incumbent chief executive and number one citizen in Kebbi State to the admiration of all.
On that epochal day, all roads led to Birnin Kebbi as thousands of elated APC members of all status thronged Birnin Kebbi, the State Capital to be part of history making. There was little wonder therefore that the Kauran Gwandu had since hit the ground running. What a happy moment for the peace loving people of the state.
In his inaugural address to the people of the state, Dr Nasir Idris began with a gratitude to the Almighty Allah for sparing his life to witness the momentous occasion. He poured encomiums on the good people of Kebbi State for the huge confidence they have reposed in his team and the trust they expressed in them with their mandate. He said: ” What you placed on our shoulders rings bells of responsibility and honour and I will not betray you.
”Let me acknowledge with special appreciation our Governor and Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, a true patriot and big brother, Sen. Atiku Abubakar Bagudu for his selfless and dedicated services to our dear state and for the leadership which he provided and which has brought our state this far in our quest for progress and development.
”I also salute my brother and running mate, the Deputy Governor of our state, His Excellency Senator Umar Abubakar (Tafidan Kabi). A worthy partner in progress. Together, we have resolved to work for the betterment of our state.
”Let us also appreciate the former Governors of our state with thanks, who sacrificed a lot to drive our state on this path of unity, progress and development. No doubt, Kebbi State had thrived under their guidance and direction and we shall not fail to remember the things they have done positively and consolidate on the gains.”
Dr Nasir Idris also specifically thanked the Director-General of his campaign, His Excellency, Saidu Usman Nasamu Dakingari the former Governor of Kebbi State, all members of the campaign team, party leaders and supporters, friends, family members, associates and all those who contributed to the victory of APC at the polls.
With the courtesies over, the Govenror noted, ” we have emerged from a political struggle that should potentially make us stronger, wiser, better, more determined and more united as people of Kebbi State who are collectively desirous of a better State.
”The people of Kebbi State have made their decision. Our victory at the polls has defined the kind of leadership the people desire. Politics is over. It is now time for governance and all of us must come together and join hands irrespective of our political affiliations to move Kebbi State forward. This state belongs to all of us and the task of building it is the collective responsibility of all of us.
”Let me say from the beginning that the oath of office we just swore to has made it obligatory on us to make government completely responsible and responsive to the yearnings and aspirations of the people on whose trust we stand here today as leaders.”
The Governor further vowed to evolve a government in which ”the first duty shall be to ensure that every private or personal interest is eliminated and public interest warmly embraced.
”We are going to have a government committed to blocking every hand that is stretched either to gain or exploit the resources of the state to personal advantage.
”Alternatively, we shall raise and lift up every hand that seeks to selflessly contribute in our genuine efforts to make Kebbi State better. To this end, appointees who place personal interests above public interests will be replaced quickly with those committed and devoted to the prosperity and wellbeing of Kebbi State and its people. I shall sincerely stand against every special interest from affairs of government and will request same from every government official, no matter their status,” Idris vowed.
The Kauran Gwandu, however, sent a note of caution to those waiting to manipulate the opportunity that God has given them to serve the people to note that it shall not be business as usual.
He promised: ”We shall not allow, tolerate or encourage the abuse of power to favour any group or individuals against the majority. Affairs of government must be done with justice, equity and fairness. This government of the Land of Equity shall govern in equity and with equity, In Shaa Allah!
”’Let me congratulate the people of Kebbi State and to further assure you that Government has returned completely to the people. In our sincere bid to allow the people own their government, we shall work together with the people and walk hand in hand with the people for the benefit of all the people.
”There will be no malice, no hatred, no discrimination and no acrimony or personal hostility. It is time for governance and development. We shall work without looking back until governments at all levels reflect, represent and promote only the public good and promote only the general interest, aspirations and wellbeing of our dear state.
”Our government will In Shaa Allah, strive to achieve an Agenda of redirection, reconstruction, re-alignment and restoration. It will not be easy but dear compatriots, it is very possible. It requires sacrifice and commitment from all of us. This Agenda seeks to provide for our people just the way a family provides for its children. My good people of Kebbi State, our Agenda is predicated on the cherished manifesto of our great party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).”
According to the Kauran Gwandu, the leadership they promised the people of the state is the one ”which will transform Kebbi State for the benefit of all. Priority attention will be given to Agriculture to drive our economy and build our farmers to greatness while still being food sufficient.”
Dr. Idris further vowed that the education sector will witness a positive revolution of high standards and welfare for teachers and students.
He added: ” I am first of all a teacher and unionist while teachers and workers will not suffocate under my watch. We shall reform the civil service, provide health care services, motivate our health personnel and build roads in our urban and rural areas so that people will reap the fruits of democracy which they planted and nurtured.
”Over the next four years, we shall focus our attention on the improvement of the welfare of our people. We shall initiate programmes that will put the poor of our state at the top of our priorities.
”There will be deliberate policy support to the people to make them self-employed, self-reliant, and productive employers of labour. This will be a huge boost to the economy of the people and the state. By doing this, we shall be investing in our people, shield their jobs and plan for their future.
”Our economic vision is to make Kebbi State attractive for investors and facilitate our industrial development. To drive and actualize this lofty economic vision, we must develop our infrastructure, build our cities and make them attractive. Birnin Kebbi, our state capital has witnessed development over the years but this administration will do more to make it a truly beautiful capital worthy of the pride of every Kebbi man and woman.
”This shall be extended to our major towns to be upgraded to the status of major cities thereby attracting the investments and patronage we need to propel our economic growth and development. In the coming four years, we shall open our rural areas and connect villages, towns and cities with roads and facilities until every citizen feels the impact of our leadership.”
The Governor further averred that Kebbi State had the singular distinction of being the most peaceful state in the country. He, however, bemoaned: ” Sadly, there were attempts in recent times to take away this beautiful glory from us because of the activities of bandits in the southern part of the state, especially in Kebbi South.
”The responsibility to protect lives and property of the people is that of the government. Governor Atiku Bagudu has done wonderfully well on security and we shall try to do more. We shall exert more political, economic and even social will to return peace to our state and ensure that our people, South, North and Central sleep with their two eyes closed and continue their farming activities in peace and tranquility. We must be responsible for each other’s security and welfare.
”Without any doubt, Kebbi State is blessed with tremendous human and material resources. We have men and women blessed with intelligence, education, tact, ideas, experience and creativity. This administration will be constituted with the best hands with noble and objective ideas and who have the energy and patriotism to add value to governance. We shall be guided by merit and track records of achievement in bringing together people with energy and commitment to form the next cabinet, In Shaa Allah.
”Your Excellences, Ladies and Gentlemen, today, I request all citizens of Kebbi State to join hands with us to actualize our dream of a great state. We all have equal stake in the drive for progress and development.
”We must work together and build our state together. I am confident that we can do it together. We do not have the luxury of time. Therefore, let us hit the ground running. A better Kebbi State is coming. We request your support and fervent prayers as we commence our committed service to our state and people.”
The Kauran Gwandu has indeed been beckoned to diligently serve the people of Kebbi State and he will do so creditably well, Insha Allahu to the admiration of all.
Sarki is the Special Adviser on Media & Publicity to Kebbi State Governor.