Niger state Governor, Abubakar Sani-Bello, has asked for a higher priority in the teaching of history in educational institutions in order to educate adolescents about their diverse cultures.
The governor announced this on Sunday during a visit to the Emir of Zaria, Amb. Ahmad Bamali, at the palace in Zaria, according to a statement by Mrs Mary Noel-Berje, Sani-Chief Bello’s Press Secretary.
He said that History teaches people about their roots while culture is a way of life of the people.
He added that Nigerians should maintain, preserve and promote their culture so as to enable them trace their backgrounds.
“The emir was kind enough to take me round the palace so that I see part of Zaria culture with regards to royalty.
“I am highly impressed by what I have seen especially the preservation of ancient culture that has been here since 1920s and this will go a long way towards maintaining our history and culture.
“The emir was also kind enough to explain the historical background of the ruling family in Zazzau to me and it was very clear and easy to understand.
“The palace is taking a new shape without having to destroy the entire palace. The feeling of the traditional institution is still there but you can see it has been cleaned and tidied up”.
He, however, called on other traditional rulers to emulate the Emir of Zazzau in the maintenance of their rich cultural heritage.
“I hope most of our traditional rulers will see what is being done here and do the same in their various emirates because this place for all I know is like a museum. I learnt so many things today,” he said.
The Emir, who along other palace subjects, conducted the Governor and members of his entourage round the palace for sightseeing.
He said the governor’s visit was a remarkable one, explaining that it will remain evergreen in their hearts as he expressed happiness that they were reconnecting.
The historical sites visited include the first palace of the emir, women wing, clinic, stable, the old city palace and fence built by the 16th Emir.
Others are the chamber of late wives of the late emirs and old personal accommodation occupied by three previous emirs; Malam Yakubu Jafaru the 16th emir, the 17th emir late Muhammadu Aminu and Alhaji Shehu Idris, the 18th emir.
Other sites visited were construction sites of a new clinic, guest house and other structures are ongoing as well as the tomb of the immediate past emir.
Zaria is an ancient city and the capital of the Zazzau Emirate which is one of the largest traditional emirates in Nigeria.
Some structures in the palace of the ancient city are believed to be over 600 years.
The present emir is from the Mallawa dynasty and is also the grandson of the first Fulani emir of Zazzau who was the flag bearer in 1804, Malam Musa Bamali, the founder of Mallawa dynasty.