Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwanso (Born 21 October, 1956) representing Kano Central District is one of the most popular politicians, to emerge from the North-West region in the fourth republic.
A two-time former Governor of Kano State between the period 1999-2003 and 2011-2015, under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
He was appointed as the Minister of Defence in President Olusegun Obasanjo‘s cabinet in 2003. In 2007, he was appointed as the Presidential Special Envoy to Somalia and Darfur by the Obasanjo administration after losing the bid from his party to contest the 2007 general governorship election.
Kwankwanso attended Kaduna Polytechnic where he obtained his National Diploma and Higher National Diploma. He proceeded for his postgraduate studies in the Middlesex Polytechnic, United Kingdom (1982-1983) and Loughborough University of Technology(1983-1985), where he got his Master’s degree in Water engineering.
His political profile can be traced back to his University days, where he was an active student leader and an elected official of the Kano Students Association.
As Governor of Kano State Kwankwanso repositioned the city back to its glory days as the critical commercial hub in Nigeria, with the establishment of 44 garment industries in each Local Government Area.
In his two times as Governor of Kano he confronted the dualisation of major road networks and the setting up of security plazas, on the roads leading to Kano Metropolis.
He constructed a 5km dualised road across the 44 local government areas in the State, to provide a connected infrastructure in Kano.
From the construction of three flyovers to underpasses and overhead pedestrian bridges at different locations of the city. Kwankwanso developed 3 new modern cities namely Kwankwasiyya, Amana and Bandirawo.
The dynamic politician in his two times as Governor carried out massive empowerment programmes, healthcare projects and improved the landscape of education in the State.
His leadership in effective public finance and revenue management in Kano State, led to significant surge from N400ml to N2bl monthly in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Under his watch Kano State was one of the viable and sustainable States in the country, and that remains the case till today.
One project he accomplished that aided the development of the State, was the 35mw Independent Power Project at Challawa-Gorge and Tiga Dams which improved power supply.
Kwankwanso also contributed immensely to Kano State’s position as one of the leaders in driving the Ease of Doing Business indices in the country.
At the Federal level, apart from serving as Minister of Defence he was a member of the Board of Trustees of the People’s Democratic Party and under late President Yaradua in 2009 was a member of the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
In 2014 Governor Kwankwanso defected to the All Progressive Congress party, where he contested in the Presidential Primaries and lost to President Muhammadu Buhari in Lagos.
Kwankwanso contributed immensely to the victory of the APC in the 2015 general elections, where he also emerged the Senator from his State.
With his service as Governor of Kano State, Minister of Defence and currently Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Kwankwanso has garnered a vast wealth of experience in leadership, administration and governance that affirms why he is one of the talked about candidates, to aspire for the Presidency in 2019.
An interesting development in the socio-political space is that Kwankwanso is gaining a strong appeal across the Northern base, and is admired from Kano to Katsina.
At the moment Kwankwanso seems to have a cold relationship with his party, which is manifest in the growing tension between him and the current Governor of Kano State Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.
Some political permutations have it that if the current reconciliation efforts in the APC led by political icon Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu fails, Kwankwanso may defect from the ruling party.
Senator Kwankwanso is married and blessed with children.