Africa > West Africa > Nigeria > Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa, Governor of Nigeria´s Kaduna State,

Nigeria: Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa, Governor of Nigeria´s Kaduna State,

2013/01/03

Sitting across from Governor Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa at 7am on a Monday morning recently, what struck my colleagues, Tatiana Valle, Regional Director Mercedes Pagalday and I as journalists and communications’ specialists working in Nigeria, was His Excellency’s commitment to promoting Kaduna.

It was our earliest conference since starting work on a appropriate country branding statement on Nigeria for United World, an international press agency operating in exclusive partnership with USA Today - from presently on we any minute at this time discovered Gov. Yakowa had by presently been awake for hours formerly the interview.

Gov. Yakowa was Kaduna through and through. His dedication to his National that day was etched across his face: passionate, enduring, committed and smiling his unmistakeable smile, he loved Kaduna. Indeed, he yearned for the northern Nigerian national – otherwise known as the ‘Centre of Learning’ - to develop a stronger, better image internationally: less about bombs and Boko Haram, and additional about what it could be: an investor’s haven where much-needed foreign partners revive industries such as textiles, automotive, solid mineral and mining.

The prime Christian Governor of Kaduna National and the prime man from Southern Kaduna to be voted into the hot seat, His Excellency cared deeply about his people. Indeed, it was that noun that peppered his interview and stuck with us so vividly: “If you come in and invest in agriculture, you will be creating jobs for hundreds and thousands of people”; “I as well want to see…additional employment opportunities for the young people and the wonderful women of Kaduna National.” He cared.

And that is what Nigeria needs: men and women who care deeply about building a brighter next for this great country. Gov. Yakowa was of those men.

At the same time as the news reached us that His Excellency had died so tragically in a helicopter crash on Saturday, our prime thoughts were: how tragic. We had sat with him just week formerly on a balmy Kaduna day, in his Governor’s Home, where we chatted amiably next Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo’s daughters’ wedding. He personally invited us there, showered us in warm hospitality and took care of us throughout our remain . He was a kind man. He didn’t have to do that: our interview had finished prior to that conference , but he was keen to cultivate a relationship with United World, operating in Nigeria, working to promote a additional positive image of the country.

Of course other people died on that fateful Saturday afternoon and our thoughts go out to their families, too. The helicopter that burst into flames in Okoroba, Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa National, signaled a black day for a lot of Nigerians.
But Gov. Yakowa was doing his utmost to shine a light into peoples’ lives.

His objectives next being voted in upon former national Governor Mr Sambo’s elevation to Vice President, were Peace, Unity and Development. The Governor completed much during his spell: building a modern, 300-bed hospital in Kamazo village; easing congestion – and therefore making peoples’ lives better - throughout the national next the N1.6billion 4th bridge linked by the N4.4billion new road north of River Kaduna.

The people of Kaduna should know they will be in good hands as Alhaji. Mukhtar Ramallan Yero is sworn in.

Gov. Yakowa’s final words to us that day reverberated around our minds long next that interview ended: “I want to see the people [of Kaduna] additional united, and putting aside religious differences.” There was that word again: people.

of the amazing things about working for United World is that we come into contact with senior and powerful people trying to create a better Nigeria. Gov. Yakowa was of those people - and may his legacy live long in our collective memories.

 

 USA Today
 

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