By Tahir Ibrahim Tahir Talban Bauchi.
Katsina State has been ravaged by the worst of the banditry that has befallen the North West. Its vociferous flames have burnt both the rich and mighty, and the poor and downtrodden. So when it comes to Katsina, social status doesn’t matter, neither do political affiliations, as all have been hit by the wave of banditry that cut across quite a number of North Western States. Maiwada Danmallam’s short brief in Hausa about Dr. Dikko Radda, APC’s gubernatorial candidate’s up close and personal experience with banditry and kidnapping; caught my attention, and the inquisitiveness to find out more about who Dr. Dikko Radda is and what his candidature portends for Katsina State, should he be successful in the 2023 forthcoming elections. From Maiwada, I’d garnered that Dr. Radda’s older brother was killed by bandits in Katsina State. Another brother of his was again kidnapped by bandits, and quite an amount of ransom was paid, to get him released by the bandits. So this is one candidate, who had suffered first hand, the pain and agony, of what this new spell of terrorism is, and has also lost a dearly loved one to the mindless killings of the bandits, who have been on a bloodbath campaign across the North.
Dr. Radda belongs to the same APC, under whose watch he had undergone the trauma of losing the life of a loved one. His unique experience therefore, has carved him stronger, and built him as a more formidable character for the struggle that lies ahead of him, in the race for the number one seat of Katsina State. He has little or nothing to fear in combatting the terror visited upon the peace loving people of Katsina State. He seems to have an edge over the others, in understanding what Katsina needs first. The restoration of confidence in its citizens, making them believe once again, that the State can protect lives and property, and uphold law and order. Little wonder, he is visiting every Ruga and corner of Katsina State, traversing the villages and hamlets that have been struck by the same bandits that have also attacked and killed members of his family. He is building confidence in the voting populace, making them understand that their problems and his are one and the same. He is sending a clear message that it is not going to be a government of two different sets of people; one in the urban areas, rich and comfortable, and the other in the rural areas, poor and security-challenged. I posed the question, Who is this Dr. Radda, a technocrat turned politician, who is now running a hamlet to hamlet campaign like some modern day robinhood?
Dr. Radda hails from Dutsinma local government of Katsina State. He had his primary school education in Radda from 1974-1980. He went on to attend Teacher’s College at Zaria, from 1980-1985. He then attended College of Education in Kafanchan from 1986-1990, where he got his NCE. He was then rigorously trained at the famous Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, ATBU, Bauchi, where he obtained a B-Tech Agric Economics and Extension (Hons), from 1992 to 1996. Two years after, he joined the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he completed his MSc. in Agric Extension and Rural Sociology from 1998 to 2004. He went back to ABU Zaria for another Masters in International Relations and diplomacy. Dr. Radda obtained his PhD in 2015. His working experience reflects humbling beginnings as a classroom teacher for a good ten years, from 1989 to 1999. He moved to the banking industry, working with FSB from 1999 to 2003. He later became the local government Chairman of Charanchi Local govt. from January 2005 to April 2007. He worked in the National Assembly from 2012 to 2014 as a Senior Legislative Aide. He was also National Welfare Secretary of the APC from June 2014 to July 2015. He later became the Director General, and Chief Executive of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises, SMEDAN.
Dr. Radda may have started out as a technocrat, building a career that has enriched him with the knowledge and experience needed to become the number one citizen in Katsina State; but his personal experience has equipped him with maybe even more. States that have suffered the banditry menace may be tilted towards the opposition parties competing with the APC. Katsina is one of such. This means that Dr. Radda has an uphill task of facing the narrative, and turning it in his favor, and that of the ruling APC. The advent of the security forces in the North East that is fast eradicating the Boko haram scourge is being replicated in the North West. With an equipped and resilient army, working hand in hand with local vigilantes and the traditional leadership of the affected communities, banditry will be a thing of the past. Dr. Radda is more educated than all his opponents put together, just as his experience dwarfs all of theirs put together. He has felt the full brunt of the banditry monster and should be well prepared to conquer it gallantly; even if in honor of his late brother, and of course the thousands of other lives that have fallen to these dare devils. From the campaigns being taken to the doorsteps of the voting populace, to the promising responses as feedback from the very organised and objective campaigns of Dr. Dikko Radda, surely, victory is certainly on Radda’s radar.
Tahir is Talban Bauchi.