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Dr Kabiru Umar Dasuki, Vice President

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Dr. Kabiru Umar Dasuki is a highly accomplished and esteemed individual who has recently been appointed as the Vice President of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation (AFRIEF). With this new role, Dr. Dasuki is set to make a significant impact on the organization and the African Islamic economic landscape. Dr. Dasuki brings a wealth of expertise and experience to his position. He holds a PhD in Business Administration, specializing in leadership and organizational change, from the University of Phoenix in Arizona, USA. In addition, he has a certificate in leadership from Kansas State University in Manhattan, USA. Dr. Dasuki’s educational journey also includes an MBA from Usman Danfodiyo University in Sokoto, Nigeria, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Lagos in Akoka, Nigeria.

These diverse qualifications have surely equipped him with a well-rounded perspective on business administration and leadership. In terms of his professional background, Dr. Kabiru Umar Dasuki has served as the Rector of the Sokoto Polytechnic, which is now known as Umaru Ali Shinkafi Polytechnic. This role reflects his experience in educational administration and leadership, a stellar track record in academia and research. Throughout his career, he has dedicated himself to studying and promoting Islamic economics, which is an important field that combines principles of Islamic law with economic theory.

Dr. Kabiru Umar Dasuki’s appointment as the Vice President of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation is indeed a significant development. In his role, Dr. Dasuki will be responsible for overseeing General Operations and Business Development across the organization. As the Vice President, Dr. Dasuki will play a pivotal role in shaping the strategic direction of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation. He will contribute to the overall growth and development of the organization by ensuring smooth operations and efficient management of resources.

One of the key areas where Dr. Dasuki’s expertise will have a notable impact is in Business Development. With his vast experience and knowledge, he will actively seek new opportunities and partnerships to foster economic growth within the African region. This could include exploring investments, collaborations, developing entrepreneurship projects and special initiatives that promote sustainable economic development in line with Islamic principles. Furthermore, Dr. Dasuki’s appointment highlights the commitment of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation towards promoting economic empowerment and financial inclusion across Africa. By leveraging his expertise, the organization aims to create a positive impact by fostering economic opportunities, supporting entrepreneurship, and encouraging innovation within the Islamic economic framework. Dr Dasuki’s appointment as the Vice President of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation, will undoubtedly make a significant impact in Africa. Through his leadership, the organization can further expand its reach, influence, and contribute to the growth of the African economy.


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PROFILE

Engr. Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku, Vice President, Infrastructure

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Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku is a distinguished professional with a passion for infrastructure development, who brings a diverse educational background and extensive experience to his new role. He holds a B.Eng in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Benin, Nigeria, as well as a Masters in International Affairs and Diplomacy (MIAD) from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Nigeria, He also has a Masters Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University. His strong educational foundation equips him with a range of skills and knowledge that will be valuable in his position.

In addition to his impressive academic achievements, Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku has also contributed to the field through his publications. He has authored several papers that showcase his expertise and commitment to specific areas of infrastructure development. Some of his notable publications include: “Capacity Building on Value Chain Analysis for Agribusiness: Nigeria Country Paper, Delivered in Ankara, Turkey”: This publication focuses on strategies and insights for enhancing agribusiness value chains in Nigeria. It reflects his dedication to improving the agricultural sector and promoting sustainable economic growth. 2. “Completion of White Elephants, Case Study of Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Project, Shika-Zaria”: This publication explores the challenges and successful completion of the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Project in Shika-Zaria. His personal involvement in this case study showcases his expertise in project management and his ability to tackle complex infrastructure initiatives. 3. “Computer Aided Design of Automatic Control Systems, case study – Root-Locus plots”: This publication focuses on the application of computer-aided design in the analysis and design of automatic control systems. Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku’s expertise in this area highlights his technical proficiency and his contribution to advancing engineering practices. Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku’s publications demonstrate his commitment to sharing knowledge, promoting best practices, and addressing critical issues in the field of infrastructure development.

Having worked as a consultant for several years, Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku has gained valuable insights and expertise in the field of infrastructure. His experience as a Registered Engineer with the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria further adds to his credibility and ability to make a significant impact in his new role. As the Vice President of Infrastructure for the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation, Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku will play a crucial role in shaping and implementing infrastructure projects across the African continent. His responsibilities may include developing strategies for infrastructure development, overseeing project execution, mobilizing resources, and creating partnerships to ensure the successful implementation of infrastructure projects.

The impact of Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku’s position is likely to be far-reaching. By focusing on infrastructure development, he will contribute to improving the quality of life for individuals and communities across Africa. This may involve enhancing transportation networks, promoting sustainable energy solutions, developing Special Economic Zones, expanding access to clean water and sanitation, and fostering economic growth through the development of critical infrastructure. Engr Mashood Ayinde Ojutiku’s background, education, and experience position him well to make a positive impact in his role as Vice President of Infrastructure. His dedication and expertise will undoubtedly contribute to the advancement of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation’s mission of promoting sustainable economic development through ethical infrastructure investment in Africa.


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Hajiya Aishatu Usman Muhammad, Coordinator, Halal Business Transformation Program

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Aishatu Usman Muhammad, the newly appointed Coordinator of the Halal Business Transformation Program (HBTP) of the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation is an accomplished professional with a strong background in accounting, finance, and Islamic banking. Since 2006, Aishatu has been serving as a dedicated lecturer at the Gombe State University, where she shares her expertise and knowledge with students. Aishatu’s educational journey has been equally impressive. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Science degree in Accounting, both earned from the prestigious University of Maiduguri. Currently, she is pursuing a Ph.D. program at Universiti Sains Malaysia, further solidifying her expertise in her chosen field of Islamic finance. In addition to her role as a lecturer at the Gombe State University, she is a proud member of the prestigious ETHICA Institute of Islamic Finance, Dubai, holding the title of Certified Islamic Finance Executive (CIFE). She is also a member of the Islamic Institute of Accounting and Finance, Nigeria, actively contributing as a Certified Islamic Finance Analyst (CIFA) and Certified Islamic Accountant (CIA).

Aishatu’s expertise is not only recognized through her professional affiliations but also through her scholarly publications. She has presented numerous papers and authored various publications in reputable national and international journals. Her work has been featured in renowned publications such as the African Journal of Business and Economics Research, as well as the International Journal of Accounting, Auditing, and Finance and Voyage Journal of Religious Studies Her research interests encompass several critical areas within the realm of Islamic finance, corporate governance, entrepreneurship, and gender studies. Aishatu’s curiosity extends to the realm of entrepreneurship, where she investigates the factors that contribute to successful entrepreneurial endeavors within an Islamic context.  Aishatu’s interest in gender studies reflects her dedication to examining the role of women in Islamic finance, entrepreneurship, and corporate governance. She explores how gender dynamics and societal norms influence the participation and representation of women in these fields, aiming to promote inclusivity and gender equality.

With her impressive academic background and field experience, Aishatu brings valuable expertise and insights to the table. Her deep understanding of Islamic finance, combined with her knowledge of corporate governance, entrepreneurship, and gender studies, positions her as a key driver in transforming the Halal Business landscape in Africa.

Aishatu’s leadership of the HBTP is expected to lead to the development of innovative strategies and frameworks that will enhance the growth and sustainability of Halal businesses in Africa. She will work towards creating an environment that encourages entrepreneurship, facilitates access to financial resources, and promotes ethical practices within the Halal industry. Her efforts will not only help businesses thrive but also contribute to the economic development of the African continent.

Furthermore, Aishatu’s influence is anticipated to extend beyond Africa and impact the Global Halal Market. As she actively engages in research and collaborates with stakeholders, she will contribute valuable insights and ideas to the international Halal community. Her work may lead to the formulation of best practices, standards, and regulations that can enhance the integrity and credibility of Halal products and services worldwide. Her expertise, combined with her passion for ethical finance and entrepreneurship, positions her as an influential figure in shaping the future of Halal businesses in Africa.

With her vast knowledge, dedication, and commitment to Islamic finance, Aishatu Usman Muhammad is undoubtedly a valuable asset to the Africa Islamic Economic Foundation.


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INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Celebrating a Legacy of Reforms and Transformation in Nigeria: The Armed Forces Ruling Council (AFRC) 27th August, 1985 – 27th August 1993.

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By Baba Yunus Muhammad

On August 27, 1985, precisely 38 years ago, Nigeria witnessed a significant turning point in its history as Gen. Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida and the Armed Forces Ruling Council (AFRC) took charge of the nation’s affairs, following a bloodless palace coup that supplanted the Supreme Military Council administration of Major General Muhammadu Buhari. Over the next eight years, Babangida’s regime would bring about a series of economic, political, and social reforms that would shape the country’s trajectory and leave a lasting legacy.

One of the remarkable feats of Gen. Babangida’s regime was its ability to implement sweeping economic and political reforms despite navigating through the turbulent waters of a global oil price downturn. Facing a dire economic situation characterized by declining oil revenues, mounting external debt, and inflation, the Babangida administration embarked on a program of economic reforms known as the Structural Adjustment program (SAP). The SAP, launched in 1986, was aimed at addressing Nigeria’s economic vulnerabilities by liberalizing the economy, reducing government intervention, and encouraging private sector growth. The program was supported by international financial institutions like the World Bank and IMF, as a way to stabilize the economy and promote sustainable development.

While the SAP intended to create a more stable and prosperous economy, its implementation had a series of unintended consequences that deeply affected the Nigerian population, especially the poor and vulnerable. Some of the key challenges included the removal of subsidies on fuel and essential commodities, austerity measures, unemployment and devaluation of the Naira.

The public dissatisfaction with the socioeconomic impacts of the SAP culminated in a series of protests and demonstrations known as the SAP riots. The unrest occurred in various parts of the country, with protesters expressing their frustration over the rising cost of living, unemployment, and deteriorating living conditions. The SAP riots were characterized by street protests, strikes, and clashes with security forces.

President Babangida’s response to the SAP riots was characteristic of his leadership style: a combination of negotiations, reforms, and efforts to address public grievances. He acknowledged the need to balance economic reforms with social welfare concerns. Consequently, the government initiated measures to mitigate the negative impacts of the SAP, including targeted programs to support vulnerable populations and stimulate economic growth.

If anything, the SAP riots served as a reminder of the importance of addressing the social dimensions of economic reforms. The events also highlighted the need for effective communication, transparency, and sensitivity to the potential social implications of policy changes in a developing country context. While the SAP was meant to transform Nigeria’s economy, the riots exposed the importance of taking into account the human and social factors that could shape the success or failure of such reforms. The aftermath of the riots influenced subsequent policy decisions, encouraging a more comprehensive approach to development that incorporates the concerns and needs of all segments of society.

The Babangida administration’s demonstration of great resilience and determination in diversifying the Nigerian economy led to the initiation of policies that bolstered non-oil sectors and liberalized trade, attracted foreign investments, stimulated industrial and private sector growth.

President Babangida’s administration was also characterized by significant political reforms, including the restructuring of the country through the creation of more states and Local Government Areas. Twelve states, namely, 1. Akwa Ibom 2. Enugu 3. Delta 4. Kebbi 5. Osun 6. Abia 7. Ebonyi 8. Taraba 9. Nassarawa 10. Yobe 11. Kogi 12. Jigawa were created during his tenure, to foster inclusivity and grassroots participation. This decentralization of the power structure of Nigeria promoted socio-economic development, brought governance closer to the people, enhanced regional development, improved representation, and fostered inclusivity in the decision-making processes.

As we commemorate the 38th anniversary of the military regime of General Ibrahim Babangida, it is important to recognize not only the remarkable economic and political reforms but also the exceptional quality of the ministers and advisors that served the administration during this period. This period could arguably be described as an era of enlightened governance in Nigeria as the regime is credited with enlisting one of the best teams in Nigeria’s history. Notable individuals who served in the government included: 1. Professor Olikoye Ransome-Kuti: Minister of Health and renowned global health advocate.  2. Professor Bolaji Akinyemi, who brought a unique blend of academic acumen and practical diplomatic experience to his role as Foreign Minister. His tenure was marked by his strategic vision, innovative approaches, and steadfast commitment to advancing Nigeria’s interests on the global stage. 3. Chief Philip Asiodu: Secretary to the Government of the Federation, known for his exceptional administrative skills and contributions to national development. 4. Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu: Minister of Finance, an economist who played a crucial role in implementing the economic reforms. 5. Professor Jubril Aminu: Minister of Education and a respected academician who contributed to educational development. 6. Alhaji Abubakar Alhaji: Minister of Budget and Planning, known for his expertise in economic planning and management. These individuals and many others formed a talented and dedicated team that contributed to the success of President Babangida’s administration.

General Ibrahim Babangida, as President, was known for his exceptional leadership qualities and unique characteristics. His ability to navigate complex political landscapes, and his relentless pursuit of progress and peace set him apart.  No doubt, Gen. Babangida was characterized by his pragmatism, charisma, and forward-thinking approach. He demonstrated an exceptional ability to connect with both the urban and rural populace, bridging gaps in society and transcending ethnic and cultural boundaries. His leadership style was defined by civility, inclusivity, promotion of dialogue and collaboration among different segments of the Nigerian society. His visionary approach, commitment to national unity, and resilience in implementing necessary reforms, adaptability and commitment to the welfare of Nigerians remained unwavering, and left an indelible mark on the nation. President Babangida’s statesmanship and ability to foster relationships both domestically and internationally earned him tremendous respect globally.

The legacy of Gen. Babangida’s regime is punctuated by numerous landmark achievements. His administration embarked on an ambitious infrastructure development program, which led to the construction and rehabilitation of road networks, bridges, airports, telecommunications and other critical sectors nationwide. Some notable landmark infrastructure projects include: 1. Third Mainland Bridge: The construction of this iconic bridge in Lagos, one of the longest in Africa, improved transportation and connectivity in Lagos. 2. Abuja: The development and construction of Nigeria’s new capital city, Abuja, showcased President Babangida’s commitment to national development and unity. 3. National Stadium Complex: The establishment of this sporting arena in Abuja provided a state-of-the-art facility for hosting national and international events. 4. Ajaokuta Steel Complex: This steel mill, which aimed to boost Nigeria’s industrial capacity, was a significant infrastructural project during the regime. These efforts laid the foundation for modernizing Nigeria’s infrastructure and creating an environment conducive to economic growth and development.

Gen. Ibrahim Babangida’s tenure as Nigeria’s President, witnessed a significant overhaul of Nigeria’s security structure, reflecting his commitment to enhancing national security and stability. The restructuring was aimed to modernize and streamline security agencies to better address the evolving challenges facing the nation.

One of the notable reforms in the security sector was the dissolution of the National Security Organization (NSO), which was then split into three agencies under the Office of the Co-coordinator of National Security in 1986: the State Security Service was created and envisioned as an intelligence agency responsible for internal security matters, counterintelligence, and safeguarding against threats to the state. The National Intelligence Agency which was also established in 1986, was tasked with handling external intelligence and security matters. The NIA’s primary focus was on gathering intelligence related to foreign threats, international relations, and protecting Nigeria’s interests abroad. The creation of the NIA was aimed to strengthen Nigeria’s intelligence capabilities in the global context, enabling the country to make informed decisions on international matters. The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) was saddled with military-related intelligence outside and inside Nigeria.

The reorganization of the Nigerian Military and Police Force was one of the efforts the Babangia administration made to improve effective coordination between the military and the police, fostering collaboration in maintaining law and order. This included initiatives to enhance professionalism, accountability, and effectiveness within both organizations.

The National Security Council (NSC) was also established by the Babangida administration as a high-level body to oversee security matters and provide strategic guidance. The NSC played a crucial role in shaping security policies and responses during his administration.

Babangida’s restructuring of Nigeria’s security structure was aimed at adapting to the changing security dynamics and promoting a more integrated approach to national security. While the restructuring brought about positive changes, it also highlighted the ongoing need to balance security measures with respect for human rights and civil liberties. The reforms laid the groundwork for future administrations to continue refining and adapting the security apparatus of the country to address emerging challenges. The legacy of Babangida’s security reforms underscores the complex nature of maintaining security in a diverse and dynamic nation like Nigeria.

President Babangida’s tenure was also marked by several landmark features that set his administration apart. His government prioritized social welfare programs, investing heavily in education and healthcare. The government’s efforts to alleviate poverty were evident through the establishment of community-based programs and initiatives to empower the less privileged. Additionally, he established the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) to combat unemployment and promote skills acquisition, further demonstrating his commitment to the welfare of the Nigerian people.

Gen. Babangida’s commitment to poverty alleviation and women empowerment was exemplified by his recognition of the crucial role women play in nation-building and consequently, implemented policies to empower and uplift them. President Babangida appointed women to key positions of authority and launched initiatives to promote gender equality and women’s participation in various sectors of the economy. Furthermore, his government introduced policies and programs aimed at promoting gender equality, such as the establishment of the National Center for Women Development (NCWD) and the initiation of the affirmative action to increase women’s representation in political positions.

In the annals of Nigerian history, the legacy of the Babangida regime goes beyond political and economic reforms. It shines a spotlight on the transformative role played by the dynamic and visionary First Lady, Maryam Babangida. Her pet project, the “Better Life for the Rural Woman” initiative, stands as a testament to her unwavering commitment to empowering women and uplifting marginalized communities.

The first lady recognized that the backbone of Nigeria’s society often resided in rural areas, where women played pivotal roles in agriculture, family, and community development. Inspired by her compassion and determination to effect positive change, she launched the Better Life for the Rural Woman initiative in 1987. This initiative focused on improving the lives of rural women through skill acquisition programs, healthcare services, and access to microcredit facilities. It showcased the administration’s dedication to uplifting marginalized communities and promoting gender equality. Maryam Babangida’s efforts challenged traditional gender roles and stereotypes, promoting gender equality and women’s active participation in socio-economic development.

The Better Life for the Rural Woman initiative remains an enduring symbol of Maryam Babangida’s dedication to uplifting the lives of Nigerian women. Her visionary approach to addressing the needs of rural women demonstrated that meaningful change can be brought about by targeted and grassroots-level interventions. The initiative’s impact continues to be felt through the improved livelihoods, increased self-esteem, and empowered communities that it nurtured. Maryam Babangida’s legacy as a champion of women’s rights and rural development is etched into Nigeria’s history and serves as an inspiration for future generations!

Another program that exemplified the Babangida administration’s commitment to inclusive development and nation-building was the Nomadic Education Program which was launched in 1989, to provide educational opportunities to nomadic communities across Nigeria. Recognizing the challenges faced by these communities in accessing quality education, the program established schools and provided educational opportunities for nomadic children. The implementation of the Nomadic Education Program involved setting up special schools, known as Nomadic Education Centers, in areas with significant nomadic populations to meet the unique needs of nomadic communities, including flexible school schedules that accommodated their migratory lifestyle. It provided education that integrated pastoralism and upheld cultural values, allowing nomadic children to receive an education while still maintaining their traditional way of life. The program made significant strides in expanding access to education for nomadic communities, empowering them with knowledge and skills that would contribute to their personal and community development. Furthermore, it broke the cycle of poverty and ensured that nomadic children had equal opportunities for education and socio-economic advancement. The program’s legacy continues through subsequent administrations and initiatives that prioritize inclusive education for marginalized communities.

The Babangida administration was not without its dark moments. Perhaps, the darkest moment in President Babangida’s administration was the nullification of the June 12, 1993, presidential elections. His political reforms and transition had midwifed the June 12 Presidential elections, which was widely regarded as one of the fairest and most credible in Nigeria’s history, with Chief MKO Abiola emerging as the presumed winner. However, due to unforeseen circumstances, the election was annulled. This unfortunate decision sparked unprecedented political controversy in Nigeria as it also highlighted the complexities of the country’s political landscape at the time. While this decision was met with widespread criticism, it is essential to acknowledge that President Babangida later took personal responsibility for the actions and expressed remorse for the negative impact it had on Nigeria’s democratic journey.

General Ibrahim B. Babangida’s military administration holds a significant place in Nigeria’s history. It was a period marked by economic resilience, political reforms, political restructuring through states creation, and the pursuit of progress despite challenging circumstances. While not without its controversies, this era shaped Nigeria’s trajectory, leaving behind a legacy of reforms, commitment to infrastructure and social development, poverty alleviation and women empowerment efforts, and the continuous pursuit of a prosperous and united nation that have shaped Nigeria’s transition into a more globally competitive and inclusive nation.

In celebrating the 38th anniversary of Gen. Ibrahim Babangida’s military regime, it’s essential to acknowledge both the challenges it faced and the achievements it accomplished. From navigating economic difficulties to implementing sweeping reforms, Gen. Babangida’s legacy stands as a testament to his vision for a stronger, and more prosperous Nigeria. The impact of his leadership continues to influence the nation’s path, reminding us of the power of determined and forward-looking governance.

Baba Yunus Muhammad is a political affairs analyst and President, Africa Islamic Economic Foundation, Tamale, Ghana.


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