What Makes Kano A Longstanding Emirate In Nigeria – Prof. Abdallah Uba


What makes Kano Emirate the most unique and long-standing Emirate in the country are its inherent historiography coupled with its ability to absorb and merge individual national and transglobal identities into a singular Kananci cultural identity.

“Of all the grand emirates of Northern Nigeria, none has the spectacular and expansive history and cultural anthropology recorded like the emirate, now emirates, of old Kano,” says Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu Daneji, a double professor in the Department of Information and Media Studies.

Delivering the first ever Coronation Lecture on Thursday, 1 July 2021 at the Convocation Arena, the immediate past Vice-Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Professor Abdalla Uba, noted that the state of Kano would for a long time to come continue to lead in the admiration of others for its rich cultural heritage and unique way of doing things not only in Nigeria but in a global arena.

The lecture, titled Kano Emirate: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow was part of the activities lined up for the coronation of the 15 Fulani Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero. Prof. Abdalla also gave the background to the historical evolution of the Emirate and its spectacular contribution to the socio-cultural, economic and political development of Nigeria in particular, and the West African colonies, in general.

“The Kano Emirate having evolved over one thousand years has undergone tremendous transformation in all aspect of its development. By 2021, Kano has retained its lead as innovatory Emirate incorporating, as it does, not only all the antecedent structures outlined, but also capping it with total acceptance, expansion and development of new ones,” said the University don.

He further argued that both the city, the Emirate, and its traditional institutions have immensely benefitted from relative structural and narrative stability, thus, making Kano the most unique Emirate in the country.

Tracing the history of Kano as a ritual city, Professor Abdalla disclosed that the earlier settlers of the city lived at the base of the towering Dala inselberg and located near waterways of Jakara River in which they developed a religious fixation of paying tributes to the spirits of the river.

However, the arrival of Bagauda sometime in 999AD turned the small settlement into a more organized administrative city, thus, providing an organized leadership which they hitherto lacked. This paved the way for the beginning of the Emirate system in the city.

He went further to explain the various transformations of Kano as a mercantile city, a scholastic city, a colonial city, an industrial city, and now a bustling media hub. In his remarks the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar described emirs as the custodians of our rich culture and tradition and who played a significant role in the promotion and preservation of our cultural heritage.

Also speaking, the Vice-Chancellor of Bayero University, Professor Sagir Adamu Abbas, said coronation was a declaration of our hopes for a brighter future as a society. He noted that Kano had an illustrious heritage, which it was hoped Emir Aminu Ado Bayero would use to take the state and the traditional institution to greater heights.

In his speech, His Royal Highness Alhaji  Aminu Ado Bayero, the Emir of Kano, emphasized the relevance of history in national growth and development. He noted that any society that does not preserve its history and culture is certainly bound to lose its identity.

The Emir commended the Management of Bayero University for the support it had been rendering to the Kano Emirate and said the relationship between the two institutions was inseparable.

The Kano State Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, pledged that his administration would continue to bring more developmental projects and initiatives for the growth and prosperity of the State.

The lecture was attended by many traditional rulers from across the country.

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