Teacher. Sule Bello: A year without an icon of history, culture

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  • Why we want to immortalize his legacy – Group

  • We will rename the Office of History and Culture after the late scholar – Ganduje

MMoments, they say, fade, but history and documentation make them permanent. For people familiar with the fields of history, culture and politics, Sule Bello is a household name in these fields.

Renowned Kano-born professor of history and culture, Professor Sule Bello breathed his last on October 3, 2021. His friends and associates described him as a progressive, with a keen interest in revival and promotion of history and culture as a path to development.

It is in this context and in commemoration of his one year since death, a group of friends and associates, formed a group called Sule Bello Legacy Project, with the sole purpose of immortalizing the legacy of the late professor .

Part of the activities organized to mark the first anniversary was the exhibition on Sunday of the life and times of the late scholar at the Kano State Bureau of History and Culture (Gidan Dan Hausa), the one of the places he ran during his lifetime, and a public lecture on Monday.

Among the exhibits were his attires, awards, certificates, areas of interest in traditional music, plays, food/delicacies and commerce and picture galleries of major life events , among others.

Who was Sule Bello?

Bello was until his death the National Chairman of the People’s Redemption Party (PRP) and Professor of History at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, Kaduna State.

He had his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from the same institution (ABU), as well as his post-doctoral work at Rutherford College University of Kent, Canterbury, UK.

He served as Executive Director of the Kano State Bureau of History and Culture from 1987 to 1989; Executive Director of the National Arts and Culture Council (NCAC) from 1989 to 2001, Sole Trustee of the Nigerian National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) from 1991, as well as Chairman of the World Craft Council (WCC) from 1991 to 2001.

Professor Bello died on October 3, 2021 after a brief illness and was survived by two wives and four children.

Why we want to immortalize his legacy – Group

According to the chairman of the legacy group and close associate of the late scholar, Yusuf Abdallah, the group is organizing the exhibition to present the story of the late Bello for the admiration and subsequent emulation of the younger generation.

“Our main objective is to draw worldwide attention to this iconic scholar of knowledge production and his various stewardships in different aspects of human life, especially history and culture, environment, community spirit and the school of mentoring. We think all of these things shouldn’t be left out so that people can learn from him.

“We have documented his life in lectures and a book. Two prominent scholars write about its philosophy and history. This particular exhibition will continue until December (for three months).

“The late Professor Bello was very simple and humble. Humility and approachability are his hallmark. We are also compiling some of his unpublished works for multi-volume production of a book.

“We want school children to come and see the exhibition here at Gidan Dan Hausa.

“He also had a keen interest in preserving the history and culture of the Kano people, so we are doing the same to him so that his legacy lives on forever,” Abdallah explained.

He was a good mentor – Don

Speaking about the late scholar, a lecturer at Kano State University of Science and Technology (KUST) Wudil, Dr. Murtala Muhammad said the late professor was his mentor with whom he co-authored a number of publications.

Muhammad described the personality of the late Bello as extraordinary, who despite his position as a scholar did not look down on others.

“He was an amazing person. We were lucky to have him in Kano. He mentored many (including me). He was interested in traditional and local issues; culture, market, politics, the economy and many other things, so he already misses Kano and Nigeria.

“He presumed everything, almost everywhere. I know of a time when Obasanjo was president, he wrote a book about the issues happening in the country, as well as issues of justice, equality and development,” Dr Muhammad added.

“He had a keen interest in culture, tradition”

For Dr. Munzali Ahmad Dantata, a close friend of the late scholar, Bello had a keen interest in promoting all aspects of Hausa culture and tradition.

“He believed that every aspect of any culture, not just its music and art, should be promoted because that’s what sets them apart.

“Throughout his life, he endeavored to enlighten the public and even policy makers on this subject.

“When he was in Kano, before moving to Abuja, he fought so many things including the demolition and subsequent destruction of the traditional walls of Kano (Badala) because that is one of the roots of our history.

“So we thought it was high time to bring these things to the public. During the exhibition, we want to immortalize and instill his legacy in the younger generation, and that’s why we invite students to continue coming for emulation,” explained Dr. Dantata.

We will rename the Office of History and Culture after the late scholar – Ganduje

Speaking at the public lecture held in memory of the late scholar, Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje said his administration will rename the State History and Culture Office in honor of Professor Sule Bello.

According to the governor, the gesture is the only way to reward his contribution to the history and culture of the state, and the Bureau in particular when he served as its pioneering executive director.

Ganduje said, “He has succeeded in transforming the Bureau of History and Culture from just a song and dance center into a place where the history and culture of the people of Kano State are preserved. . We will submit the law that established the office to the Kano State Assembly for consideration to be renamed in his honor.

Likewise, Senator representing Kano North, Barau Jibrin, thanked the organizers for the foresight, saying the initiative will help motivate the next generation to do better, knowing full well that they can be enjoyed even after they are gone.

“The late Professor Sule Bello was a man of the people, he was the friend not only of academics, but also of us politicians. He personally advised me countless times,” added Senator Barau.

Other speakers who presented papers at the event, Prof. Ali Musa and Prof. Ibrahim Mansur extolled the virtues of the late Bello and prayed for the repose of his soul.

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