“I give gratitude to Almighty God for eight years as governor and the next couple months my job in Katsina will be done and by the special grace of God I will move on with my life. I am grateful to Allah, I am grateful to people of Katsina, I am grateful to Nigerians for their support and the support I received from all quarters and corners of my state and the country” – Governor Ibrahim Shehu Shema
If impact is the measure of good governance, then Governor Ibrahim Shehu Shema has excelled since being at saddle of governance in Katsina State for the past seven and half years.
From free Education, Food Security, Wealth Creation, Infrastructural Development, Health, Water Supply, Works, Housing and Transportation, His Excellency, Alhaji Shema has made governance meaningful by delivering its benefits to the people.
An international and aviation law expert and politician, Governor Shema brings to his job an inspiring vision of Katsina State, passion for high performance and a strong determination to create new opportunities for prosperity. Moreover, in demonstrating the benefits of continuity, the man termed ‘stingy’ has strengthened hope in representative democracy and in governance.
He also appears to have inadvertently explained the reason why he has performed some of the phenomenal infrastructural transformations. He constructed an ultra-modern three-lane Ring road in the state capital, completed a massive and well-planned housing estate, expanded the airport that late President Umaru Yar’Adua started, built a world-class 250-bed orthopaedic hospital, completed the Katsina State University, establishment of Youth Craft Village, completion of Olympic-size Karkanda Stadium, magnificent Government House built and commissioned by President Goodluck Jonathan. No wonder in his speech the President commended Governor Shema thus “I’m really impressed. I wish other governors would emulate this kind of thing because it is worthy of emulation. Politics is about service.” He calls on Nigeria political class, particularly governors to copy the prudent nature of Governor Shema. This is not surprising as the frugal financial management of his administration has endeared Shema to the people of Katsina State as he was able to save up to N16 billion in the state coffers as of 2011. Governor Shema also enjoys robust relationship with the Legislature, Judiciary and what he describes as ‘productive and vibrant civil service force’. He allows them to run their finances independently without interference. Hear him: “All these hullabaloo we hear about judiciary saying that government of the state should give them independence of financing, we have already being doing it in Katsina to the judiciary and to the legislature”. Having traversed the length and breadth of the world, America, Middle East, South East Asia, South America, Europe all over the world, Governor Shema has brought to bear on Katsina State the wealth of experience he has garnered all these years on the state.
In all, Governor Shema’s people-oriented projects be it in health, education, agriculture, youth empowerment, infrastructure and human capacity development, have touched every nook and cranny in Katsina State. Today Katsina indigenes drive on smooth, motorable well-lit roads, enjoy flowing potable water in their homes, send their children to school which is in a conducive environment, and where they will receive quality education for free. They also have access to hospitals manned by qualified personnel with life-saving drugs and excellent services.