By Dayo Benson, Political Editor & AbdulSalam Muhammad
Yesterday the two chambers of the National Assembly confirmed the nomination of governor of Kaduna State, Architect Muhammad Namadi Sambo, as Vice President following a letter to that effect written to the lawmakers by President Goodluck Jonathan last week.
GovernorÂ Sambo â€™s choice defied calculation by political pundits as his name never featured among those tipped for the number two slot. By his choice, President Jonathan has proved to all that he will be his own man when it comes to taking vital decisions.
Who really is Sambo? A self made man, SamboÂ is not among the exclusive list of heavyweight politicians that made his home region a respected section in the federation.
A local breed intellectual, he was born on 2nd August 1954 in Zaria, Kaduna State. He started his educational career in 1959 at Baptist Primary School, Kakuri, Kaduna, Kobi Primary School in Bauchi and Towns School in Zaria, through 1967 to 1971.
The new Vice President regarded in the political circle as an â€˜IBB acolyte, attended Government Secondary School, now Alhuda-Huda College in Zaria, and upon completion proceeded to the School of Basic Studies at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1972.
Samboâ€™s outstanding performances earned him an admission into the northern premier university,Â Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, in 1973 where he read Architecture and graduated with flying colours in 1976 with B.Sc Hons. He also holds a Masters Degree in Architecture, and did his youth service with the Oyo State Ministry of Works.
He picked his first appointment with Bauchi State Government in 1976 where in concert with other professionals designed office blocks and a Housing estate for the then young state.
Architect Sambo was appointed Commissioner for Agriculture in 1986, deployed to Works, Transport, and Housing in 1988 under the military regime in Kaduna State.
In 1990, Sambo graciously left the service of Kaduna State Government and started a career in private practice, and floated three companies under his stable that include Coplan Associates, Nalado Nigeria Limited and Manyatta Engineering Services Limited.
The companies had over the last two decades and half garnered tremendous experience in their fields of specialization and they are household name today in the country as a major engineering companies through the clientele of the World Bank assisted, Federal and State Government projects, as well as private organisations.
Sambo who is married with 6 children became a member of the â€œArchitect Registration Council of Nigeria from 1985 and was later admitted into College of Fellows of the Nigerian Institute of Architects in 2001. He was appointed fellow â€œInstitute of Corporate Administrators of Nigeria in 1998 and later became a member of the Nigerian Water Supply Association from 1999.
He is also a member of the Kaduna Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, KADCCIMA, member of Nigerian Canadian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, NCCCI, and a card carrying member of Franco-Nigeria Chamber of Commerce and Industry, ENCCI.
The new vice President was appointed as a member of University of Oyo Governing Council in 1999, served as a member of the Board of Directors, NigerDock in 2000. Sambo journey through public service also saw him serving as a member of the Board of Directors of the Nigerian Railway Corporation in 2001 to 2003.
Elected Governor of Kaduna State in 2007
Perhaps his immense legendary background in public and private life endeared him to Senator Ahmad Muhammad Makarfi who anointed him as a successor, fought assiduously to make him the party flagbearer that eventually led to his victory in 2007 general election in Kaduna State.
A man described by many as a visionary leader stepped into Sir Kashim Ibrahim House (Government House on 29 May 2007) in Kaduna with a clear definition of what the new administration want to achieve.
Muhammad Namadi Sambo not only jettisoned policies and programmes of his mentor and predecessor in office, Senator Makarfi, but outlined an 11-point agenda anchored on services to the people.
Although his disposition earned him a confrontation with his former boss, Sambo never wane, and religiously went ahead in pursuance of his avowed policies, yet one must admit the fact that his three years sojourn in Kaduna was a mix grill depending on the divide you fall into.
A master strategist, Muhammad Namadi Sambo loves power and utilized it well while at the helm of affairs in Kaduna. He has already flagged off campaign for a second term in office before providence catapulted him to the national scene
Muhammad Namadi Sambo became a member of the â€œArchitect Registration Council of Nigeria from 1985 and was later admitted into College of Fellows of the Nigerian Institute of Architects in 2001. He was appointed fellow â€œInstitute of Corporate Administrators of Nigeria in 1998 and later became a member of the Nigerian Water Supply Association from 1999.
Also, he is a member of the Kaduna Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, KADCCIMA, member of Nigerian Canadian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, NCCCI, and privileged card carrying member of Franco-Nigeria Chamber of Commerce and Industry, ENCCI.
Furthermore; he was a member of University of Oyo Governing Council from 1999 and appointed member of the Board of Directors of NigerDock in 2000. He was later appointed member of the Board of Directors of the Nigerian Railway Corporation in February 2001 to 2003. He is now a member of the Board of Directors of TOTAL Nigeria Plc. He was elected the Executive Governor of Kaduna State and sworn-in on 29 May 2007.