Senator Muhammadu Sha’aba Lafiagi, loyalty is royalty

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By Manzuma-Ndaaba
Alhaji Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi is the senator representing Kwara North, & a formal governor of the state. He is a nupe man and unarguably the most trusted and closest ally to the late political icon of Kwara State, in person of chief Olusola Saraki. Empirically, the intensity of yesterday’s political hurricane was more felt by the people of Kwara State with this political duo in the frontline.
 Before the colossal lost of Baba Saraki, feelers have it that he was so close to the nupe man that the only time they are ever apart is when they retire to bed. What would have made a Yoruba man found such intimate refuge and friendship in the embrace of a nupe man at a time ethnicity define our body existence?
However, writting from unconventional lane, I maybe forced to say that loyalty and trust play a prominent role in the closely-knitted friendship of this duo. When a stranger manifests real love, he takes the place of a brother. That Senator Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi has remained a constant decimal in the aspirations of late Olusola Saraki and his son, who is now the present Senate President of Nigeria is a pointer to my assertion that whoever sticks to the rod of consistency in character and loyalty is a friend for life.
Before digressing, let me take you down to the memory lane.
   For more than four decades ago, providence brought Mohammadu Sha’aba Lafiagi togther with Baba Saraki, then as the Managing Director of now moribund Sugar Company Bacita. It is said that when you have a friend who believes in your existence, you can go far in your earthly voyage. Senator Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi break the ceiling of limitation way back 1991 as he became the first ever Governor of Nupe extraction in Nigeria through the help of Baba Saraki who pushed him to the impossiblity. Not even Niger State that has numerical strength could achieve that feat. Indeed, this is a verified record that have keep Sha’aba Lafiagi in the pages of history when references to those who made Nupe Land and Kwara state at large stool is being told.
Senator Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi was providing leadership in time of needs, howbeit that regime was truncated midway by the military junta. As a leader who had brought tangible innovation to Kwara state,he continued to maintain cordial relationship with his associates and actively involved in political struggles to return Nigeria to civil role.
Guided by his humanitarian benevolence, Muhammadu Sha’aba Lafiagi was trailed to his cocoon and was elected a delegate to Abacha Constitutional Conference where his brilliant contributions help to sharp Nigeria political space. He was a Pioneer member of APP in 1997/1998 but lost the party ticket to the late Govenor Mohammed Lawal of blessed memory. Naturally, the going becomes tough and hope was dimming if not blinking but to God be the glory, the political tenacity of Baba Oloye who chose friendship over primordial limits made him to keep faith in the process.
 In 2003, when the golden son of Baba, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki is to be crown governor of the harmonious state, one man defined by obstinate conviction played a first rate role and this man is Senator Sha’aba. His efforts and exemplary imprint can not be quantified. Since then, Baba entrusted his political neive heir to Senator Sha’aba who he has adopted as the first son. He said to him “Shaaba I have handled over a brilliant and intelligent young man who need you as a compass to navigate cloudy political space”. Shocked by the level of sincerity,  Senator Sha’aba responded ” Baba you have bestowed on me what we called hamannah, as long as it pleases Allah for us to be alive, we shall weather the storm together”.
That is the genesis of the inseparable and uncommon tie between these political gladiators. Not even when Baba saraki decided to pitch tents with the younger Gbemisola in 2011, Senator Sha’aba hold on to the golden son and Baba never pick any offense. Loyalty is usually short live but not with a Nupe man. Senator Sha’aba has demonstrated that again and again.
From the flipside, and from the time immemorial in history,  Nupe and Katsina are playmates. Therefore,  Senator Sha’aba and President Muhammadu Buhari do engage in master/servant jokes even at official function, this have always played to his advantage.  But as it is said “politics is local”. You are to go with what is tenable in your home front and not what you do at the upper echelon of the government.
Senator Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi belongs in the category of politicians to describe as heavyweight, and he earned this by his making as an early and consistent starter in  politics. He had given the public and impression of a loyal man, and known to be a quite rebel. Despite his imperfections, I’m triggered by his exemplary political swagger.
Below are some of his senatorial glad tidings and motions moved in the National Assembly as a responsible and responsive lawmaker:
Senator Muhamed Shaaba Lafiagi assumed office on the 7th of June, 2011, preceeded  by Ahmed Mohammed Inuwa.
On the 27th October, 2016, Senator Muhammed Shaaba Lafiagi noted for his repulsion to inhuman treatment present a bill which seek to rehabilitate Nigeria prisons and guarantee the reformation of prisoners after their terms.The bill was titled -A Bill for an act to Repeal and Re-enact the Prisons Act cap P29 LFN 2004Bill,2016. Senator Muhammed Lafiagi while leading the debate on the bill echoed the appalling situations in major Nigeria Prisons and the need for their improvement.
The bill which was supported by notable Senators like Senator Jide Omoworera, Oluremi Tinubu, Gbenga Ashaffa, Musa Rabiu” Kwakwaso among other distinguished senators was appreciated by presiding Vice President, adding that it would help improve conditions of the prisoners. Other bills sponsored by Senator Shaaba Lafiagi in the National Assembly included: 11th June, 2017 Federal Cooperative College est.. Bill, 2017, 28th March, 2018.
He prayed the National Assembly to pass a bill to effect a promissory note and bond. During  presentation of report on the 20th of November, 2012, he presented for Senate’s consideration and confirmation for further bill for an act to establish clerk and Secretary for the Parliaments of Ghana.
On the 3rd January 2017, he presented a bill for an act to Repeal the Nigerian Customs Services Management.
He also contributed to the passage of Nigeria Intelligence Financial Agency (NFIA) Bill.
He called for the establishment of mantainance facilities in the country, which will also save Nigeria scare foreign exchange.During the passing of 2017 Appropriation Bill for second Reading, on the Thursday January, 26, 2017, presided over by the Senate President, Dr Saraki, Senator Lafiagi said the 2017 appropriation budget is a budget of recovery and growth that came with great hope of recovery and development of the nation’s ailing economy.
Above all, what God has joined together, let no man put assunder. With senator Muhammadu Sha’aba Lafiagi, Royalty is Loyalty.
Dr Manzuma-Ndaaba
Writes from Lafiagi
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