Former Governor of Kano state, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso formally declared his intention to run for presidency in 2019 in Abuja on Wednesday, August 29th.

The senator representing Kano Central Senatorial District practically shut down Chida Hotel, Utako Abuja, venue of the declaration after he was stopped from using the Eagle Square.

Here are five things you may not know about the aspiring presidential candidate.

1) Student Leader

Kwankwaso was born on 21 October 1956 in Kwankwaso village of Madobi Local Government Area of Kano State. 

He attended Kwankwaso Primary School, Gwarzo Boarding Senior Primary School, Wudil Craft School and Kano Technical College before proceeding to Kaduna Polytechnic where he did both his National Diploma, and Higher National Diploma. 

He did postgraduate studies in the United Kingdom a Middlesex Polytechnic (1982-1983) and Loughborough University of Technology (1983 -1985) where he got his master's degree in Water Engineering.

Kwankwaso was an active student leader during his school days and was an elected official of the Kano State Students Association.

2) Worked as an Engineer

Kwankwaso started work in 1975 at the Kano State Water Resources and Engineering Construction Agency (WRECA), serving as a civil servant for 17 years in various capacities and rising through the ranks as the principal engineer.

In 1992, Kwankwaso was elected as a member of House of Representatives representing Madobi Federal Constituency. 

His subsequent election as Deputy Speaker in the House brought him to the limelight of national politics. He belonged to the Peoples Front faction of the SDP led by late General Shehu Yar'adua.

During the 1995 Constitutional Conference, Kwankwaso was elected as one of the delegates from Kano, as a member of the Peoples Democratic Movement led by Yar'adua.

He joined the PDP in 1998 under the platform of Peoples Democratic Movement in Kano led by Mallam Musa Gwadabe, Senator Hamisu Musa and Alhaji Abdullahi Aliyu Sumaila.

3) Two-Time Governor

Kwankwaso was elected as the Executive Governor of Kano between 1999 and 2003, under the flag of the People's Democratic Party (PDP). 

He contested the PDP's primaries in 1999 against Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, Engr.Mukthari Zimit, Alhaji Kabiru Rabiu. The Santsi/P.S.P. were behind the candidature of Abdullahi Umar Ganduje but they lost to Kwankwaso in the primaries.

He lost re-election to Ibrahim Shekarau whom he removed from the highest civil service position of permanent secretary to a lecturer in a higher institution (College of Arts and Science, Kano). 

Kwankwaso was subsequently appointed as the Minister of Defence in President Olusegun Obasanjo's cabinet in 2003. 

In 2007, he was appointed as the Presidential Special Envoy to Somalia and Darfur by the Obasanjo administration after losing the bid from his party to contest the 2007 general governorship election.

He resigned his ministerial position to contest the election in 2007 but he lost because he had been indicted by a Government White Paper.

The Deputy Gubernatorial Candidate of the party Alhaji Ahmed Garba Bichi replaced him as the Gubernatorial Candidate of the party in the 2007 elections while Engr. Abubakar Jibrin Mohammed contested for the Deputy Gubnetorial Post.

Kwankwaso was reelected for a second term as Kano state Governor on 26 April 2011 and sworn in on 29 May, 2011.

4) Indictment

On March 9, 2004, the Chief Judge of Kano state swore in the six-member commission of Inquiry which was headed by Hon. Justice Ahmed Badamasi as chairman to inquire the activities of Kwankwaso. 

The commission commenced sitting March 19, 2004 and made its report available, the government issue a white paper by November, 2004, when he was indicted.

5) Face-Off With Jonathan Over Emir Sanusi

His running battle with the presidency over the installation of the former Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as the Emir of Kano can not be easily forgotten.

Kwankwaso was alleged to have favoured Sanusi at the expense of the son of the late Ado Bayero who appeared the people’s choice. 

The protests in Kano shortly after Sanusi was announced was seen as a pointer to the claim that the late emir’s son was preferred by the people.

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