Ex-Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria political Scientist, Prof. Ali D Yahaya is dead. Intervention learnt he died yesterday in Abuja. The cause of his death is unknown at the moment.
He was at a point the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, (FASS), that was the hotbed of anti-imperialist scholarship in Nigeria. All of that has been smashed to nothing today by combined forces of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, local members of the power elite especially from the Babangida regime right to the current Buhari regime implementing the current version of destabilisation of academia in Nigeria through its IPPS program.
Prof Yahaya not only served as Director-General of the Administrative Staff College of Nigeria, (ASCON) at some point, he was also the successor to Dr. Bala Mohammed as Special Adviser on Political Affairs to the now equally late Muhammadu Abubakar Rimi when Rimi was governor of the old Kano State in the Second Republic.
As an individual, Prof Yahaya’s academic moment must be what the popular press has now pulverized into the concept of ‘Kaduna Mafia’. That is what became the more popular concept of what his study of evolution of the Native authority system showed to him to be the modernist fraction of the rising bourgeoisie in the old Northern region. They were modernist in the sense of both acquisition of modern education and the elite tactics of hegemony such as group mystification, propaganda and agenda setting.
As opposed to the Jihadist aristocracy, the ‘Kaduna Mafia’ subsequently came to acquire a mystique in popular psychology far above their electoral and even material weight. They might have exercised a lot of influence from behind in every government ever since the 1966 coup but they have never won election or ran any government till Southern politicians, notably Bola Ahmed Tinubu, entered into alliance that brought the Buhari regime to power in 2015.
The downsize of Prof Yahaya’s rich life must be when Dr. Patrick Wilmot, another ex-ABU, Zaria don who was deported by the Babangida regime alleged that Prof Yahaya facilitated the deportation as a friend of the Babangida regime. It remains an allegation to which neither Prof Yahaya is known to have responded nor any other Nigerian institution.
It would not be surprising if Prof Yahaya died in his 80s. The Islamic rites of passage for the late academic took place Sunday morning, (October 3rd, 2021 in Abuja).