Re: Kadaria’s Nollywood movie on Zamfara killings, By Ibrahim Sheme
NEWS DIGEST – The article is full of inaccuracies and falsehood. I know Kadaria Ahmed and her family very well to be able to write a full rejoinder, but I will only take note of the following attacks on her personal life:
1. Kadaria did not move to London because of or after her divorce with Malam IBK (now a professor at BUK). She was a lecturer at Kaduna Polytechnic for years before she became a Chevening scholar, which gave her the opportunity to study in London. I used to visit her when she was teaching at Kadpoly. She went to London only to study for her Master’s, after which she got a job with the BBC. That was many years after her divorce with IBK.
2. Kadaria had a successful and fulfilling career at the BBC – the world’s leading broadcast media conglomerate. She worked in various sections, including on BBC Hausa and serving as a foreign correspondent in the English sections.
3. Kadaria met her second husband, a Yoruba man from Lagos, while working abroad. They were happily married and they have two lovely kids. She paid her dues in marriage, showing full commitment to family just as she moves with her career. An irresponsible woman wouldn’t be in a marriage and beget kids that she cares for and loves ardently. By God, she even carried out a certain Islamic duty in that marriage the huge reward of which only Allah can quantify (I will leave that unannounced for now).
4. Kadaria is not a drug user or “junkie” as her attacker calls her. She campaigns against any substance use or abuse. Her former husband, a successful business man, was/is also not a drug user. He is still successful, not useless.
5. Kadaria has never converted to Christianity. She has always been a Muslim. I have known her as a Muslim all her life (before and now) – right from her student days in BUK where we were in the same Department in the late ’80s as well as in the UK when I joined her there as a Chevening scholar too. The writer, like all of his ilk who lack substance of fact, manipulates religion here as his last card in order to tarnish her image. By calling her “a condemned soul” he confers on himself powers that he lacks, as if he holds the keys to hell or paradise. It is a well known trick in Hausa land by attackers to call the people they hate as less religious than them, in order to paint them black in the eyes of unsuspecting members of the public.
6. Kadaria’s sister Zainab, whom I know very well and relate with, is also not a drug addict. Like Kadaria, she is also a mother. She is a very responsible person who helps the needy to the best of her abilities. Her kindness, rather than what her attacker loves to deceive with, is legendary.
7. Zainab has never committed murder. The writer should have told the world when she killed her security man, where she was arrested, detained or arraigned and how the supposed case went in the police station or the court. Besides, Zainab never lived in a house of her own as to have a security guard. She also never lived in Maitama as her attacker claimed. The only two (rented) houses where she lived(s) are in housing estates, one in Wuse II and the present one in Jabi. She never owned a house of her own in Abuja. She lives peacefully with her neighbours and was never known to have fought with anyone. So, it is the figment of the imagination of the writer that she is a murderer.
8. Zainab does not live in Lamido Road, Kaduna. In fact, she has never lived in Kaduna. She lives in Jabi, Abuja.
9. Kadaria is actually an indigene of Zamfara state, where her family house is well known in Gusau. Her father, Malam Ahmad, was an Arab business man and cleric who settled in Zamfara before Independence. Kadaria and her siblings were all born in Gusau. Their mother, Hajiya Hafsatu Ahmad Abdulwahid, the author of the first Hausa novel written by a woman, titled “So Aljannar Duniya”, was once a governorship candidate in Zamfara – another proof of the indigeneship of the family. Hajiya Hafsatu is a direct descendent of the reverred Sheikh Usman Danfodio, and the family tree showing this link was published in various places, including one which I myself once published.
10. Lastly, the writer has displayed gross ignorance about Kadaria by claiming definitely that she was hired by Governor Abdul’aziz Yari’s opponents to do what she did or say what she said. If he had known her fairly well as some of us do, he wouldn’t have said that. Kadaria is a principled person, one that nobody can buy for any nefarious activity. She was horned in the journalistic tenets of fairness, objectivity, fearlessness and fight for the common good. Those values she has displayed throughout her career, including when she served as Editor of the Next newspaper – a paper known for its fearlessness and doggedness in the fight against corruption, maladministration and misgovernance – the cankerworms her attacker seems to like defending. It was from Next that the origin of today’s Premium Times online newspaper can be found.
11. My analysis of the writer who used the name “Ashiru Alhaji Ashiru” is that it was he, rather than Kadaria, who was apparently a hired gun, employed to justify the misgovernance that Kadaria fights against. And in doing so, he employed falsehood, mixing it so unartfully with some basics and painted a false image of Kadaria and members of her family. By trying to deny an indigeneship to Kadaria in Zamfara, he has further exposed himself as someone who only grasps some reed as he sinks in the miasma of his lies and bigotry. The Kadaria I know can never be deterred by such personal attacks; she would only be enboldened by them.
Ibrahim Sheme writes from Abuja