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Home Profile Meet Muhammadu Dikko – the 47th Emir of Katsina, 1st Emir of Sullubawa dynasty
Meet Muhammadu Dikko – the 47th Emir of Katsina, 1st Emir of Sullubawa dynasty

Meet Muhammadu Dikko – the 47th Emir of Katsina, 1st Emir of Sullubawa dynasty


Meet Muhammadu Dikko – 47th Emir of Katsina, 1st Emir of Sullubawa dynasty

Alhaji Muhammadu Dikko also known as Muhammad Dikko dan Gidado CBE (1865 – May 1944), was the 47th Emir of Katsina from 9 November 1906 until his death in 1944.

He was the ninth Fulani emir, as well as the first emir from the current ruling Sullubawa dynasty, succeeding Yero dan Musa, the last emir from the Dallazawa dynasty which was installed by the Jihad of Usman Dan Fodio.

He came to power shortly after British rule began in 1903 following the signing of a treaty between the then Emir, Abubakar dan Ibrahim, and British officials.

He was succeeded by his son Usman Nagogo who held the title of Emir from 1944 until his death in 1981.

Early Life And Education

Dikko was born in 1865, during the reign of Emir Muhammadu Bello, to Muhammadu Gidado, who held the powerful title of Durbi, one of the king-makers, and his wife Ta-Malamai.

Dikko received Islamic education from the scholars of Katsina at Tsagero from an early age. In 1882, when Dikko was still young, the Emir Ibrahim died, and Musa, an old enemy of Gidado, became emir.

He confiscated the family’s properties, stripped Gidado of the Durbi title and gave it to his own son Yero. This brought hardship to Dikko, but Musa’s death and the ascension of his younger rival and Ibrahim’s son Abubakar brought reprieve.

Yero was stripped of the title and Dikko’s older brother Muhammadu Sada was appointed. Abubakar also imprisoned Yero accusing him of the murder of Gidado.

Emir Dikko cooperated well with the British throughout the time he was acting emir, and on 25 January 1907, the visiting acting British High Commissioner William Wallace confirmed Dikko as the new emir of Katsina.

Reign (1906–1944)

Dikko faced stiff resistance from the deposed Dallazawa and their loyalists, who saw him as a usurper and a stooge imposed by the British.

Dikko consolidated his position by appointing many of his loyalists to key posts, including his Friend Mallam Haruna, who was appointed as the first-ever Waziri (second-in-command) of Katsina. Dikko also strengthened his relationship with many of the district heads and nobles by marrying out his daughters to them.

During Dikko’s reign, various reforms were initiated, they include the introduction of various taxation systems, and the departmentalization of the native authority, with his son Usman Nagogo becoming the head of the Police department 1929.

Nagogo was later made Magajin gari, the district head of Katsina metropolis in 1937, making him the closest of the princes to his father. Another major reform was the relocation of the district heads, who had previously lived inside Katsina, to their various districts.

This relocation also somehow affected Dikko himself, as his closest confidant and second-in-command, Mallam Haruna, was reappointed by the British as a district head and relocated to Kaita, and the Waziri title was given to Mallam Zayyana.

Dikko also built a hospital and established the famous Katsina College, the first secondary school in Northern Nigeria, in 1922. Dikko promoted western education, giving some of his own children to study under the British, and encouraging other nobles to do so too.

Death and succession

Dikko died in early 1944 after suffering from an illness, leading to a succession struggle.

On one hand were the Dallazawa princes led by the powerful Yarima, a descendant of emir Abubakar, who felt that the emirship was theirs by right, and on the other hand, were Dikko’s powerful sons who also tussled between themselves for the throne.

In March 1944, the king-makers settled for Dikko’s younger son Usman Nagogo, who was the clear choice of the British because of his sound western education, as well as his closeness to his father.

Nagogo was turbaned on 19 May 1944. Dikko is buried in a garden inside the Katsina emir’s palace. The all-seater Muhammadu Dikko Stadium and a street in Katsina town are named after him.

(Culled from Wikipedia)


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