British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright, made his first visit to Kano State from 19-21 January, during which he engaged with key leaders and civil society organisations, as well as witnessing the work of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) during which he expressed his gratitude to Governor Abdullahi Ganduje for the vital support of the Governor for the widespread DFID work in the State.
The High Commissioner was treated to the great honour of a formal reception at the Palace of the Emir of Kano, His Royal Highness Sanusi Lamido Sanusi II where they discussed the Nigerian economy, DFID’s development work, and the state of interfaith relations in northern Nigeria.
The High Commissioner also visited two DFID programmes operating in Kano State, one supporting maternal and child care, and the other focusing on primary education. Over 200 clinics in Kano State alone benefit from DFID programme support in conjunction with the State Government. Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (ESSPIN) is one of the DFID funded programmes in Kano supporting Kano State Government in improving access, quality of education, and efficient utilisation of Kano State resources at the state, community and school levels. The programme is currently supporting over 5,842 public pre-primary and primary schools with over 2.9m pupils in 44 LGAs with School Improvement Programme (SIP) which consists of Teaching Skill Programme (for teacher professional development, Head Teacher training), School Base Management Committee (SBMC) training, and piloted school infrastructure programme (provision of borehole water and toilets)
The High Commissioner also visited Bayero University Kano (BUK) and the Active Citizens Project, supported by British Council, a social leadership training programme that trains participants in the skills and knowledge needed to affect social change in their communities. Active Citizens is running at universities across Nigeria and in 30 other countries.
During the visit the High Commissioner also visited the Gidan Makama museum, which holds historical records of the Kano Emirate.