A BRIEF HISTORY OF KATSINA AND DAURA EMIRATES

From pre-colonial times to the present, katsina state (that is katsina and Daura emirates) has always been the shining star of the North. It is not only the cultural pacesetter of the region; it is also birthplace of the seven historic Hausa states that form the nucleus of what is today northwest Nigeria.

Daura has the distinction of being the cradle of Hausaland’s civilization. It is in Daura that the mythical union between Bayajidda and Daurama brought forth the founding fathers of Daura, Katsina, Zaria, Kano, Rabir, and Biram-the seven Hausa states that constitute the fulcrum of northern Nigeria. Daura is also the cradle of the seven so-called Banza Bakwai states –Zamfara, Kebbi, yawuri, Ilorin, Nupe, Gwari and kwararrfa-which Emir of Daura Alhaji Faruk Umar Faruk renamed in 2009 to ‘Yan Uwa Bakwai. In other words, much of what constitutes northern Nigeria would have been inconceivable without Daura. And this fact, as we will see later, continued to define katsina state’s relations with its neighbhours throughout much of the colonial and post –colonial periods. A few centuries after Daura birthed the 14 Hausa and non-Hausa city states in what is today northern Nigeria, Katsina quickly outrivaled its siblings and emerged as the strongest of the states. Between the 17th and 18th centuries, at the peak of the Trans-saharan Trade, Katsina became the veritable commercial headquarters of the entire Hausaland. Historical records have it that Katsina also became, far away, the biggest and most prosperous of the Hausa city states. As the cynosure of Hausaland at the time, its economy boomrd tremendously.

Economic prosperity brought with it several ancillary benefits such as the attraction of scholars and students from North Africa and beyond to the city Katina soon became the preeminent center of Islamic learning and scholarship in the whole of Africa south of sahara. Thus when the Shehu Usman Danfodio Jihad overthrew the Habe rulers of Katsina in 1804, the Jihadists did not meet a benighted people who were sunk in ignorance; they met a people who were deeply inserted in global Islamic learning and scholarship; who were versed in Islamic epistemology and juris-prudence.

Unfortunately, glorious as the Jihad was, it signaled the dimming of katsina’s political fortunes; Katsina was politically subordinated to the neighbouring Kano, although its status as the centre of Islamic scholarship was diminished. In spite of its political “demotion”, however, it continued to function as the fountain of Islamic knowledge throughout Hausaland.

Katsina political fortunes didn’t change during British colonialism. In 1903 Emir Abubakar dan Ibrahim surrendend to British colonial rule, which endured until Nigeria independence from Britain in 1960. Although Katsina didn’t quite regain its erstwhile political importance during colonialism, it was able to retain its status as the undisputed leader of education and scholarship in Hausaland.

Northern Nigeria first middle school was established in the early 1950s. similarly, the northern Nigeria’s first teachers training college, the katsina teachers training college, was initially established in katsina. The school became the training ground for future northern Nigerian leaders for years. It produced leaders such as Sir Ahmadu Bello, the sardauna os sokoto and first premier of Northern Region; Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, the first prime minister of Nigeria; Alhaji isa Kaita, wazirin Katsina and first minister of education of northern

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