By Sadiq Ibrahim Dasin
From my beloved Fufore local government area, yet a painful death of a political icon who has gone from our sight for ever, but will never go away from our hearts, as he would remain in our political history. He was Hon. Dauda Bello Furo, our second representative (after late Dan Galadima Adamawa, Alh. Ahmadu Ribadu) to represent Fufore Federal Constituency in the Federal House of Representatives in Lagos from 1979-1983. Late Bello died in the morning of Saturday December 5, 2020 at the age of 62 in Bamaiyi Hospital at Dou Beli, Jimeta.
Born on Friday 14th February, 1958 in the village of Nasarawo, near Pariya, in Daware District, late Dauda was a person with a courteous and refined manner; an urbane nature perhaps received from his brother in law, (who was his sister’s husband), Alhaji Jaafaru Abba Furo, Chairman Fufore LGA from March, 1994 – March, 1996.
To his luck, late Dauda grew up under the tutelage of Alh. Ja’afaru Furo, a teacher and a Headmaster in various villages/towns within and outside Adamawa state. They were together at various times at Gereng, Wuro-Bokki, Gengle, Mayo-Belwa, Jimeta, Mubi, Song, Yola and in Gombe, Gombe State. As a result, Bello spoke Hausa, Fulfulde and Batta/Bachama fluently. This made him an asset to our electioneering campaigns anywhere we went looking for votes. He was often our lead spokesman. Anytime he held the microphone the Fulbe said ‘Odo kam o Pullo’, Hausa said ‘kai wannan Bahaushe ne’ and Bwatiye said ‘Bwatiye ne’. And when he spoke in English, he was flawless.
Late Dauda’s luck for having been under the tutelage of a Headmaster who moved with him wherever he went on transfer, enabled him to know places and made many friends and classmates from many tribes, region and religion. He started Gereng Primary School in 1963, then to Mayo-Belwa primary school 1964, Tudun Wada Primary School, Gombe 1965-1966, Mustapha Primary School Yola, 1967 and Hammawa Primary School, Yola 1968-1969. For his secondary school, late Dauda attended Government Secondary School, (GMMC) Yola from 1970-1974.
To further his education, late Dauda went to College of Preliminary Studies, Yola in 1976 (where Adamawa State Polytechnic is presently located) to study ‘A’ levels to prepare himself for University. While he was there in IJMB 1 in 1979, the then ‘godfather’ of Fufore local government politics (and the man who actually gave us the local government), Alh. Ahmadu Ribadu, (who was an Educationist with Alh. Jaafaru Abba Furo), pulled late Dauda out of the school and put him in politics. He was made to contest the seat of House of Representatives under the platform of NPN which he lost, at the first ballot, to Alh. Muhammadu Yola, Katuka Adamawa, of the GNPP.
Katuka was in fact from Jimeta. His father was the Chief Imam of the Central mosque in Jimeta and was a man who had no causal connection with Fufore at all. After the election at which Alh. Sale Gurin of NPN won the House of Assembly seat for Gurin state constituency and Chief Joel Madaki of GNPP won the House of Assembly seat for Fufore state constituency, Alh. Ahmadu Ribadu of the NPN lost the Gongola state Governorship election to late Alh. Abubakar Barde of the GNPP. However for late Dauda, the NPN filed a suit against Katuka and Katuka’s election was nullified by the court because his tax clearance certificate was found to have been forged.
As a result, a bi-election was ordered to be conducted by the Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO) at which the GNPP was not allowed to field a candidate because their candidate (Katuka) had filed a forged tax clearance certificate. The GNPP then formed an alliance with UPN and fielded a common candidate, Mr. Bedan Gaude, under the platform of the UPN. Yet, Dauda Bello Furo won the bi-election.
At the time he became member House of Reps, he was just 21 years old and had only GCE certificate, as he did not complete his ‘A’ levels.
There is something I will never forget about the bi-election. It was because of it that I got the first N30/ in my life, which I worked for. I was in Form 2 going to 3. To get Counting Clerks for the bi-election, FEDECO officials came to my school at Aliyu Mustapha College and recruited indigenes of Fufore LGA and some from Yola South LGA. I was lucky to have been picked. The votes from all the polling units in the LGA were brought to Fufore GSS for counting. When we counted the votes overnight on Saturday, we were followed to the school on Monday and paid N15/ each, which was a huge amount of money to me. I was 15 years old.
Nigeria’s highest denomination of currency was ‘Murtala’ which was N20/. In paying us, FEDECO paired me with my classmate, Abdulkabir Ahmed, who is now the Chief Operating Officer (COO) NNPC Headquarters, Abuja. I collected the money which was 1 Muratala (N20/) note and a N10/ note for both of us. Unfortunately, the money was stolen in my class, though I eventually recovered it. Amma fa sei da na je wajen wani Malami a Dasin, the first and second to last in my life, so far. Kasan Dasin in mun buga Yasin, (a wanchan lokacin) ance ko Borno sun san da zaman mu. I hope I would live to tell the story of how the money was stolen and eventually recovered.
Late Dauda completed his four year term in the House of Reps in 1983. When he came home to contest for ‘Tazarce’ that year, he was challenged by Alh. Aliyu Bello-Malabu and Alh. Bobbo Pariya. The Primaries had to go to second ballot between the aspirant who came first (Aliyu Bello-Malabu) and the incumbent (Bello Dauda Furo), who came second because non of the three aspirants secured the minimum votes legally required to win the ticket in the first round of balloting. In the end, Aliyu Bello-Malabu defeated Bello Dauda Furo in the second ballot and secured the ticket.
Having failed to secure re-election in 1983, late Dauda remained in Lagos where he worked with two private companies, Miro Bonsam Nigeria Limited and Brainy–Brag Advertising Agency. He was also on the board of Trans-World Security Agency all in Lagos.
In 1997 late Daudu returned home and as the ‘son’ of a Headmaster that he was, late Dauda returned to school. First he studied at College for Legal Studies, Yola where he obtained a Diploma in Common law. Then he moved to Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola and studied Advanced Diploma in Public Administration in 2002 and later obtained B. A. (Hons.) Language and Communication Arts in 2011 before finally obtaining a Masters Degree in Peace and Conflict Studies in 2015.
TO BE CONCLUDED …