On 10th of January, Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, the former Speaker of House of Representatives and Governor of Sokoto State turned 54.

Undoubtedly, he is one of the most outstanding cosmopolitan Nigerian politicians and leader. He is a man of distinct character and quality whose contribution to the development of Sokoto State and Nigeria is well acknowledged. To him, and particularly his supporters, friends, families, associates and well-wishers, 54 is not ‘just a number’, but a PIN to his resolute competent leadership. His 54th birthday is therefore a profound anniversary worth celebrating.

It is an indisputable fact that he has always remained on the side of the people and history since his sojourn into politics in 1999.The Tambuwal factor in Sokoto and Nigerian politics is still potent, and it is almost certainly because of his many positive traits, which have endeared him to his people. While taking into cognizance his contributions as a Speaker of House of Representatives and Governor, his scorecard is certainly impressive.

Aminu, as he is fondly called by his followers who comprise of the large spectrum of the populace is one politician who has generated attention and commentaries.

In politics and leadership, he is already a living legend. His impact in Nigerian politics is very visible and dominant which made him to be a force to reckon with. He is a leader that neither looks up to the rich nor look down on the poor. He is also too brave to be cowed or to be cheated. I have to say that he is a very transparent, honest, God-fearing and humble leader.

Tambuwal is no ordinary politician; he is a master political strategist and tactician. He understands people and the game of politics. He is a man of wise counsel, and has imparted that counsel to his followers in a way that is always forthright, clear and compelling in its simplicity.

He has been at the centre of Nigeria and Sokoto politics; scrutinised and analysed by his adversaries for close two decades and yet, he keeps on rising as a star. If heroism is to be measured by service and openness to the electorates, then Governor Tambuwal is fully qualified as a political strategist of the first order.

Mutawallen Sokoto has every reason to be grateful to his creator for what he has done for him and, for sparing his life to witness yet another birthday. It is unquestionable fact that the people of Sokoto did not make erroneous choice electing him as their governor in 2015 and 2019 general elections. It didn’t take him time to rejuvenate good governance immediately he assumed office in May 2015.

The last four years of his purposeful, visionary and accountable leadership has positioned the state as a force to be reckoned with in terms of economic growth and development. Today, the positive impact of his administration is felt at every nook and cranny of the state. The aggrieved are the few clusters that believe he did not give them access to corner the fortunes of the masses for their personal and selfish interest.

Ever since his emergence as the Speaker of House of Representatives in 2011, analysts, commentators and people have spoken of him in terms of what “could be” and, later, of what “might have been” due to his leadership qualities and charisma.

In 2015, he attempted taking a shot at the nation’s top job, but destiny made him to lead the people of his state as their governor, an office he occupies up to date. This author thinks he can go beyond the status of a governor.

After aspiring for the nation’s top in 2019 under the PDP platform in which he came second in the presidential primary election, he was given the ticket to re-contest for governor which he won in the first and re-run elections. His victory at the elections signifies his acceptance by his people. It is also true that the state has improved significantly in nationwide economic recovery.

Mutawallen Sokoto didn’t lag behind his contemporaries going by the giant strides he recorded in the last four years of purposeful leadership to the sakwatawas. His intellect is formidable, his values sound, his understanding of the state’s complex needs and opportunities unmatched. Sakwatawas are lucky to have him re-elected as their governor because his re-election will curb the growing power of pockets of special or quack interests, which so often conceal their self-serving agendas behind a facade of fist-in-the-air patriotism and unfulfilled promises.

The governor swiftly made good of his signature campaign pledges of declaring emergency on education, health, agriculture, infrastructures and youth empowerment. Despite the meagre amount of resources accruing to the state, part of which is channeled to debt servicing, his notable achievements include, construction of an International Conference Centre (ICC) Kasarawa, Sokoto; construction of Housing Estate at Kalambaina, Sokoto; on-going constructions of abandoned three Zonal High Courts in Isa, Gwadabawa and Tambuwal, renovation and constructions of schools across the 23 LGAs; renovations and equipping of hospitals in the 23 LGAs. He also renovated and upgraded the High Court complex in Sokoto, among others.

The bumper harvest the state has been recording in the last four years was part of his support to the agricultural sector. His administration promised to complete the abandoned projects by his predecessor before the end of his tenure. The projects include: State Independent Power Project (IPP), Gidan Salanke Housing Estate, College of Agriculture Wurno and College of Legal Studies Wamakko. His laudable public-health policy in the state is now a model to many states in Nigeria.

A meditative gentleman by nature and a man of few words, he has been meticulous, transparent, modest, focused, visionary, thorough and responsible to a fault. He has his family, humanity, community, state, religion and country at the heart of his existence. May Allah grant Mutawallen Sokoto many more peaceful years of sound health.

– Yahaya writes from Sokoto