By Rabiu Musa
In 2013, Kano state government, during administration of Engr. Dr. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso budgeted N1,800,000,000 for the establishment of Senior Islamic Secondary Schools in all the
44 local government areas of Kano state.
The state government, through the then Commissioner for Education, Mr. Tajuddeen Gambo, revealed that the establishment of the schools was meant to mainstream Islamiyya schools
students into the institutions.
Mr. Gambo said after completion, the schools will be empowered to train and graduates
students with certificate equal to the Grade II teacher’s certificate.
He revealed that “In Kano, a mammoth number of students are graduating from Islamiyya schools but could not proceed their education because of unavailability of relevant colleges in their immediate environment”.
“These schools will assist significantly after completion to admit students and equip them with Islamic knowledge as well as prepare them for the competitive labour market”.
Similarly, On December 24, 2013, the Governor, in his 2014 budget presentation to the state House of Assembly announced the allocation of N6.5 billion for the continuation of work at schools for Islamic studies in all the 44 local government areas of the state.
According to him, the schools are in different phases of completion and with the release of the sum of N6.5 billion, all 44 schools will be completed before the end of the 2014 fiscal year.
Pictures from the abandoned Building in Bunkure local government, Kano state
Nine years after the award of the project, some supposed beneficiaries do not see the light of the project while others abandoned to rot as rat, snake houses and farm produce storing facilities.
Consequently, an on-the-spot visit to some local governments in Kano by this newspaper revealed a horrific state of the schools particularly in Garun Mallam and Bunkure area councils of the state.
Investigation revealed that the schools are not in existence in Wudil, and Garko out of the ten local government areas visited by this newspaper namely; Kibiya, Kura, Rano, Bunkure, Gaya, Bebeji, Garun Mallam, Wudil and Garko.
Corroborating, the Zonal Director, Wudil Zone, Kano State Senior Secondary Schools Management Board (KSSMB), Mal. Abdullahi Aliyu Abubakar said “We only have the Technical College approved for construction same time as the Senior Islamic Schools”.
The SIS schools are not in existence in Sumaila and Garko local government areas respectively”.
“Had it been they’re in existence, we must have known about them, because we’re responsible for sending teachers and must be in zonal schools registry”.
Situated in Yadakwari village, the abandoned structure of the school in Garun Mallam local government was awarded for construction to Red Moon Investments Nigeria Ltd in 2013.
A public search on the website of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) revealed that the company, Red Moon Investment Nigeria Limited was incorporated in Kano, Nigeria on 23 July 2009 with registration number 826348.
The company does not have the competency to scale through for the award of the contract as it was tagged inactive on the C.A.C portal. Hence, the contract awarded to the company violated state public procurement act.
Data of the company obtained from Kano State Bureau of Public Procurement revealed that the address of the company is No.6 Zaria road while the actual registered address of the company on the C.A.C portal indicated No. 61 Sharada Phase II, Industrial Area, Kano.
However, this newspaper could not locate the company in the two addresses provided to the
Public Procurement Bureau and that of the C.A.C. In addition, the 2 mobile number of the company obtained from a source in the ministry of education was switched off as at the time of compiling this report.
The company’s website indicated that it has two Directors namely; Danta Sdhour and Ahmed Shour.
Findings revealed that the abandoned school structure was converted into farm produce storing facility and maize production plant in the community.
A visit by this reporter to the school at Garun Mallam met a guard man identified as Malam Ali Muhammad Yadakwari who revealed that he inherited the task from his senior brother who died sometime in 2018 from brief illness.
He said “nobody is paying me for this job, i am guarding the school on voluntary basis except for dues generated from people storing onions in some of the classrooms”.
A source within Kano state ministry of education who crave anonymity because he is not in a position to address press reliably revealed to this newspaper that the contractor submitted retainership clearance for onward payment of his remaining contract dues.
He said “There is a culpable negligence from the side of the government to verify and authenticate the validity of the information submitted by the contractor”.
He added that “All the information related to the contract is with the Director of physical planning of the ministry”.
Pictures of the abandoned structure in Yadakwari, Garun Mallam L.G Kano
YADAKWARI MONACH REACTS
In a reaction to this development, Muhammad Daniya Ibrahim Yadakwari, the village head of Yadakwari expressed disappointment over the snail speed of the project in 9 years.
He said its important for the state government to know that the abandoned project if completed will go along way in assisting our teeming students who are finishing Islamiyya schools to enroll.
According to him, the abandoned structure in the community surface fear in the minds of the people that it might become a hideout for criminals in this era of insecurity in the country.
He called on the state government to come to their aid and complete the project.
He also appealed to the authorities concern to pay some members of the community whose farms were used to lay the foundation of the school.
“People who relied on farming to feed their family in this community were really suffering because their land was collected and no commitment was made to pay them and buy another farm”.
“We beseech the government to help these poor people and give them their money to buy another farm land and continue farming like any other member in this community,”.
On the same vein, the abandoned structure in Bunkure local government awarded to Amtech Consult in 2013 according to a source within Kano state Bureau of Public Procurement, was situated in Falungu community.
The project, unlike its counterpart in Garun Mallam, was awarded to an unregisrered company.
A public search on the website of Corporate Affairs Commission does not fetch any information related to the company as well as search om google is displaying another service providers companies in other countries.
A visit to Falungu community in Bunkure by this reported found out that most of the walls of the building structure fall down and other equipment missing in the entire stretch of the building.
Checks in Falungu community by this reporter revealed that they relied on a single house donated by a member of the community to serve as school.
Mal. Dahiru Muhammad, 59, said in this community, we don’t have school constructed by government. That is way it came as a thing of joy when we were told that a new High Islamic Secondary School will be build in his community.
“Sometime in 2013, when we saw heavy trucks moving to this village, we were all elated because we felt that God has answered our prayer and the government remembers us”.
According to him, “There are a lot of students who are completing Islamic education and are very apprehensive to join other higher institutions. Constructing the school in our community will help in alot for our kids to be literate.
He said, “Surprisingly, few years after the construction started, we woke up one morning and found out that all the construction equipment were evacuated by the site”.
“We call on the Kano state to help us and reconcile with the contractor to come back to site and complete the building of the school”.
Comrade Idrees Shehu Burun-Burum, is the President, Society Against Corruption (S.A.C), in interview with this reporter, said “Kano state government has a number of questions to answer related to this project”.
“Kano state released 1,800,000,000 as mobilization fee and claimed to have deployed contractors in the entire 44 local government, how would they explain the non-existent of the schools in some local governments?
“The state government should also explain the reason behind intervention by Universal Basic Education (UBEC) and the mode of the intervention in completing the projects in some local government areas”.
According to him “Its obvious that there’s mismanagement of public funds”. He said at organization level, we’ll take it further from where you stop and unearth any hidden truth in the award of the project”.
On the same vein, Mal. Bashir Ado Kibiya, a public affairs analyst from Kibiya, revealed to this newspaper that although the school was constructed in Kibiya local government, but the Kano state government replaced Technical College with S.I. S building.
He said “The construction activites of our technical stopped without any reason sometime in 2018”.
“In 2019, after we lauched and advocacy visit to some concerned authorities and lobby for the completion of the technical college and construction of the Senior Islamic School but to our utmost surprised, we woke up to see that the government sent a contractor to convert the structure of the building into Senior Islamic Secondary School”.
“To date, nobody explain to us the reason for the convertion of the technical college and the land allocated for the construction of the S.I.S is still stranded in the local government 9 years after.
Ministry of Education Ignores FOI Request
The freedom of Information request sent to the state commissioner of education requesting for information on the contract attracted no response.
When contacted, the public relation officer of the ministry, said the letter was in the office of the Director, Physical Planning and that he can not release any information unless they send a delegation to the various locations alleged to have been abandoned.
This reporter went to the ministry for quite number of time but they could not provide the financial progress report related to the contract as at the time of compiling this report.