By Amir Sa’ad Ribadu
The 2023 election cycle has introduced quite a handful of female politicians ranging from the candidates themselves to the wives of candidates. Some female politicians have garnered massive publicity and relevance within their states, while others have become national figures and inspirations to women all over Nigeria.
One such woman is the wife of Katsina state Governor-elect Hajiya Fatima Dikko Radda, whose sudden emergence in the Katsina state political scene has made her an inspiration to women and a political force to reckon with in Katsina.
Before her emergence into the scene as a result of her husband’s success at the Katsina APC primaries sometime in May 2022, Hajiya Fatima, fondly known in Katsina as Zinariya is only known for her philanthropy, passion for educating the girl-child and healthcare delivery by a few beneficiaries of her foundation, PAC-F. PAC-F, which she founded a few years back, has kept her busy. In a recent interview, Hajiya Fatima attributed her passion for philanthropy, which birthed PAC-F, to her late mother.
In another interview in December, she told reporters how she intends to support her husband’s policy, especially in eradicating poverty and improving the healthcare and educational environment for the Katsina girl child.
It is therefore not surprising when she was seen campaigning so vigorously that she is said to have taken her husband’s message personally to 146 wards out of the 361 wards in Katsina, which is unprecedented for the wife of any guber candidate in any state in the North.
Her campaigns mainly centred around her husband’s policy document. Also, they focused on her passion for helping the girl child and supporting her husband in making healthcare delivery accessible to all in Katsina, especially women.
She seems to have been accepted by women and young people in Kastina because most can relate with her, owing to her age, ability to understand and proffer solutions, and natural propensity for generosity. Her acceptance is evident through the crowd she gathers every time she’s at a campaign rally or even in her house when she’s around Katsina.
Her Batagarawa low-cost home has become a popular destination for many who need assistance for medical purposes or daily needs. Her humility, they say, is akin to that of the carpenter of Nazareth.
Her youthful determination and willingness to contribute to her husband, Dr Dikko Radda’s campaign, could be seen in how passionately she reached out to the electorates in Katsina villages. She travelled through the length and breadth of Katsina’s Funtua Zone, a zone marred by insecurity and violence, and on many occasions, some members of her entourage have opted to stay back, but not Zinariya. This is because she was determined to witness first-hand the situation of the typical Katsina family in the villages where insecurity and poverty are rife.
It is, therefore, not surprising to see youth and women rally around her, chanting slogans of hers and her husband’s whenever she is around. This and many more reasons are why Katsina is said to be lucky to have a youthful, energetic, and passionate Governor in Dr Dikko Radda, who shares precisely the same qualities as his wife, Zinariya Fatima Dikko Radda.
Amir Sa’ad Ribadu writes from Libreville Crescent, Wuse 2, Abuja. He can be contacted via email@example.com.
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