UK Bello’s Achievements In Customs, Ketare Throne as Kanwan Katsina III

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The Kanwan Katsina III, District Head of Ketare, Alhaji Usman Kankara Bello.

FEATURE STORY

By Shola Fadeyi

When  the  youth of Ketare, recently rolled out the drums in honour of Alhaji Usman Bello  Kankari , it was in acknowledgement and celebration of the strings of achievements , which   he has recorded and the pronounced development  , he has brought about in his domain and beyond , in his  about 21 years on the throne as the   Kanwan Katsina III.

Progress

Precisely, Alhaji UK Bello ,mni  a retired but not tired  Controller of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS)  became the District Head of  Ketare District in Kankara Local Government Area of Katsina State on November 4, 2000  , even while he was still in Service,  and the day has remained indelible in the minds of the indigenes, because of the progress  he has brought to the  people and the domain.

 

The youth under the auspice of the Ketare Youth Development Association (KEDEMA) in Kanakara Local Government Area had  described the 21 years of UK Bello on the throne of Ketare as eventful and  characterized  with achievements in the areas of youth and women empowerment ,educational development ,water supply, health ,roads , ICT training among others.

Celebration

To lend credence to the assertion of the youths,  all the other people of the communities which make up  Ketare District  had  also enmeshed  themselves, in the celebration  and prayers due to the fact that their royal father has  improved their well being , catered for their welfare and impacted on them positively in every facet of their lives.

 

Alhaji Uk Bello’s contributions to the development  of the  Ketare District  started  even before  he became the royal father , while he was still in the employ of the Customs , where he served in  various ranks  and  capacities meritoriously .

 

Accomplishments In Customs

An   accomplished manager of men and material,UK Bello  headed so many State Commands of the Nigeria Customs Service such as Kano. Jigawa and Federal Capital Territory. Abuja , Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara and the  Easter Marine Command with headquarters in  Port Harcourt, which covers Rivers, Bayelsa, Edo, Delta, Cross River and Akwa Ibom States and from where he  retired  in 2017,after reaching the retirement age of 35  and after having  recovered   billions of  naira for the Government .

 

Gratitude

This is why the communities in Ketare have continued to be grateful to the late Emir Alhaji Muhammadu Kabir Usman  for his magnanimity  in allowing  UK Bello to continue to serve in the Customs , even when he was crowned  in the year 2000  as the Kanwan Katsina III to succeed his late father , thus giving him the  opportunity he had, to make huge contributions to the development of the customs, and the economy, for another 17 years  before he retired.

 

This also enabled him  to  attract positive attention and focus to Ketare as not  just a worthy son of that district, but to Katsina State and Nigeria in general , for the fact that his contributions were national.

 

Reformer

A man of immeasurable goodwill , the Kanwan Katsina III has used his excellent human relations and connections to bring developments projects that cut across all the communities that comprise Ketare District. From 2017 to  in the areas of Enlightenment,  Education, Health, Environment, Agriculture, Social, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) as confirmed by the youths.

 

Thus beyond being a royal father, Uk Bello  is also a nationalist , a patriot,  a professional  and committed customs officer ,  a public relations  extra ordinary   , a social commentator , a philanthropist   a reformer and a pacesetter traditional ruler  who has utilized all these attributes and many more to fast track  the development of Ketare.

 

Philanthropy

A devout muslim and a humanitarian, Alhaji  Bello  is a philanthropist who has given a helping hand to many fellow Nigerians who needed his help or support for their noble projects.Little wonder that he has been initiated to the group of 100 Eminent Nigerians from Kaduna State who have  contributed tremendously to the growth and advancement of the  country in the past 61 years or thereabout and he is still forging ahead  to add value to the throne ,Ketare District , Kaduna State and the country at large.

 

Health

In adherence to the aphorism which says that health is wealth , the Kanwan Katsina III  being an individual who passionately loves his people and he is deeply concerned with  their  health and general well-being has   been involved in a lot  of enlightenment programmes, towards making his people to know  that they must be very hygiene conscious.

 

He has been very strident   at calling for the end of open defecation in his domain ,while he has influenced the construction  of many toilets in the communities under him, as well as encouraged landlords to provide such facilities in their houses.

Alhaji Bello  has likewise   been supportive to the Kankara Local Government Area Health Department in ensuring success of Polio Immunization and programmes for Pregnant mothers and children,  as well as all health programmes organized by the State and Local Governments for the overall benefit of people of Ketare District.

 

 

Enlightenment/Awareness

A traditional ruler with deep  vast interest in the development of his people . This has made him  to constantly involve himself in creating awareness and embarking on enlightenment on issues and matters  in all spheres  which  he knows will positively impact on his people. For instance, recently , he had to mobilize  his people to ensure the success of the Enumeration Area Demarcation (EAD) exercise in Katsina State.

Because of the seriousness he attaches  to the matter, Alhaji Bello  directed village heads and religious leaders from the areas to use the services of town criers and sermons in the mosques to enlighten their subjects on the importance of the exercise, in guiding  the government on its planning, for road construction, health, education and other social amenities.

It is indeed on record that the campaign embarked upon by the traditional ruler on the issue  made  the  people to allow demarcators  unrestricted access to move freely during the exercise ,and provide accurate information in order to number and demarcate their houses.

He also collaborated  with RUWASSA at the State and Local Govemment levels, for the eradication of Open Defecation (ODF), in Ketare District.

Alhaji  Bello also established a very close relationship members of Nigerian Union of Jourmalists Katsina State Council towards creating a awareness for his people in supporting both State and Federal Govemment’s policies and programmes

Education

The Kanwan Katsina III  has shown that he appreciates the value of education and as thus taken constant initiatives to ensure that the sector  is developed  and modernized ,not only in his domain but in Katsina State and the whole of the country.

For example, he has embarked on ceaseless campaigns  for the review of research institutes, colleges of education and  polytechnics curricula and course contents, to reflect present  realities and technological needs  of the country , and  for the equipment of such schools, with the vital materials to ensure that the students have the opportunity of quality education as leaders of tomorrow.

The intervention of Kanwan Katsina has led to the successful establishment and take-off of Community Day Schools at Ketare, Kukasheka, Pauwa, Tudu, Ganzamawa Gundawa, Tsamiyar Jino and Katoge through communal efforts.

 

Similarly, he facilitated the construction of UK Bello Primary at Ganzamawa village, construction of additional classes at Pauwa and Tsamiyar Jino Community Day Secondary Schools, due to increased enrollment.

 

He liased with the Social Development (SDG) Office, Katsina State and attracted the establishment of people-oriented Programmes such as schools and health care clinics in Ketare District as well as collaborated  with the Katsina State Education Trust Fund (ETF) at ensuring  the provision of teaching materials, and most importantly securing a centre for continuous education in Ketare District, where so many students are now enrolled.

Alhaji Bello also collaborated with the National Youth Service Corps State Office in Katsina  State and ensured posting of youth corpers  to all the Secondary Schools in Ketare District and  their  proper care and well-being . .

ICT Knowledge

In an effort to provide ICT knowledge to teeming youths in the area ,Kanwan Katsina  supported a Computer training programme  for three hundred youths from Ketare District, while the training was sustained in phases as a result of which students now  find it easy to register for JAMB, NECO, WAEC examinations as well as during  recruitment exercises for employment  either at Federal, State or Local Governments. That indeed, was a commendable initiative.

 

Economic Development                  

The Kanwan Katsina IIi quest for the promotion of the economic interest of his people has also form a burning desire in him to always   acquaint them of the benefits of any economic issues  from government. Thus his counsel has made it possible for  people of the  communities under him to benefit  from interest free loan provided by government  .

In this guise ,recently, he  made the wards heads and the people to  be aware that government has set aside special funds to assist  owners of small businesses under the special financial support programme of trader money , farmer moni and    market Moni , so that farmers and petty traders  will be supported  with soft loans, ranging from N50, 000 to N300, 000.  He also told them the requirements  required to benefit from the  loan.

   Projects         

Alhaji Bello  has been very vocal in calling on  the State government to rehabilitate the Gundaya and Hyra Health dams , to enable the people of the communities to store more waters .              To encourage government to do more, he has also been in the fore front to acknowledge and show appreciation on behalf of the people, for the projects it has executed ,namely , the  comprehensive health care centre in Ketare,  and the construction of gully erosion sites in Gundawa among others.

He liaised with the Controller  of Federal Ministry of Works, Katsina State to ensure the completion of Kankara-Gurbi Road, which is a Federal Government’s project  as well as  with Community and Social Development Agency (CSDP) in Katsina State, and attracted so many Developmental projects which were executed in Ketare District.

Peace Initiative

He ensured stable peace and order in Katar district and playing a key role in the Katsina State Amnesty Programme.

 

Collaborations /Synergy

On security and mutual coexistence, the Kanwan Katsina has worked tirelessly to ensure effective collaboration with all the  Federal agencies. For instance, it was through his collaboration with the National Identity Management Commission,-NIMC that  all eligible persons in Ketare District got registered to obtain the National Identity Card.

Equally, through such collaboration with INEC Office in Kankara Local Government Area, he ensured that all eligible voters in Ketare District were registered and got their Permanent Voters Cards. This has greatly impacted on  large voters turn out during elections.

Not only that, Kanwan Katsina III, liaised with  notable Agencies, Department and Boards  such as WACOT, CASSAVA Growers Association, the CBN, CSDP and  RUWASSA for the benefit of the good people of Ketare District.

 

Others include liaison with Government’s intervention programmes, on eradication of Open Defecation, Economic Empowerment, the SDGs, State Education Trust Fund (ETF), the Gidauniyar Jihar Katsina, the NYSC, the NPC for birth and death registration, in Ketare District, all he did for the betterment of the life of people of his district.

Honours /Awards

No wonder, UK Bello mni, has been  honoured severally and given dozens of merit awards and certificates of excellence, while in active public service and as a traditional ruler. Prominent among such merit awards, letters of Commendation and appreciations were the ones received from the NYSC in  2019, the National Population Commission in 2018, and the one from the office of Secretary to the Katsina State Government in 2008.

Also in 1999, UK Bello got the Best all round officers Award from the Nigeria Customs Service, another one in the same year,   as the best Public Relations Officer of Nigerian Customs.

To crown it all, the Kanwan Katsina  obtained the prestigious elite institute membership certificate from the famous National institute of Policies and Strategies Study -NIPSS, ;Kuru in  Plateau State. For his excellent performance , he was also a beneficiary of the  leadership training he got from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs University of Pittsburgh and the Johnson Institute for Responsible Leadership among others.

 

Conclusion

Indeed, Alhaji Bello’s contributions to the development of Ketare District as the Kanwan Katsina III can indeed not be over- emphasized. However, what is important is that, despite his litany of achievements so far on the throne , he’s still untiring , but planning  to forge fresh collaborations with relevant bodies with a view to  impact  more positively on his domain , the Katsina State and the nation , as a true patriot that he is.