Usman Danfodiyo University, Sokoto’s Professor Aliyu Ibrahim Yakubu is Dead

Prof. Aliyu Ibrahim Yakubu of the Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, at Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, UDUS (previously University of Sokoto), has died.

He was admitted to UDUTH after becoming ill a few days prior, spent some time in the ICU before passing away.


One of his colleagues, Yahaya Baba penned:

Innnalillahi wa inna Ilaihin rajiun (We are indeed unquestionably from Allah SWT and to Him shall we inescapably all return). In the early hours of Tuesday, 18th October, 2022, the sad news of the death of Prof. Aliyu Ibrahim Yakubu was broken, which threw the academic community into sorrowful and tearful mourning mood. Prof. A.I. Yakubu was until his death a longstanding Faculty at the Department of Soil Science in the Faculty of Agriculture of the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, where he served for nearly three and half decades.

Prof. A. I. Yakubu is undoubtedly an epitome of academic excellence, who rose through the academic ranks to attained the enviable feat of Professor more l than a decade ago. He was a product of the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto and the Premier University of Ibadan. At evolving and prime period of his academic career, Prof. Yakubu has been known to be a very diligent, upright and humble Scholar. In addition of his novel research outputs, he was very impactful to many young scholars through academic mentorship and training at different stages.

Prof. Yakubu was said to have started and built the Faculty of Agriculture of the Kebbi State University of Science and Technology, Aliero from the scratch sometimes in the mid 2000s. As the pioneer Dean and the academic mentor of the newly established Faculty on sabbatical and subsequently on secondments, he was responsible for the training of the young academics, who have now rose to the position of Professor. Two of the Deputy Vice Chancellors of the University, who are all professors are from the Faculty of Agriculture.

Prof. Yakubu was not only a scholar but staunch agricultural practitioner. All passers-by along the Usmanu Danfodiyo University main campus road are living testimonies to his professional practice. His farmlands in the waterlogged areas along the kwalkwalawa river makes him visible, particularly in the evening across all seasons. He has been an all-season farmer adding value and implementing many ideas and research findings in his farmlands for personal benefits and as trials and experiments for the advancement of scientific knowledge. In addition to income diversification, his farmlands provide students and researchers of various categories with the opportunities to test new knowledge and make new discoveries. He was indeed legendary in this regard.

Even at his sick bed, some said in his dying moments, he was enmeshed with getting things done- mentoring and giving away philanthropically. Few days to his death, while at his sick bed he ordered for a thesis of one of his PG student to be brought to him for his inputs while struggling with life. He was also said to have directed that some kilograms of grains be given out to some usual beneficiaries of his zakat. He never stopped thinking and acting in the good of his profession and humanity even at the point of death.

The congregants at his burial from both the academic community and the community in which he lived speaks volumes of his personality and the kind of memorable life he lived. Members of the top hierarchy of the University, friends, colleagues, students and professional associates were in attendance. The mourning was just a reflection of the life of the dead in the living time. Farewell and condolence messages were emotionally and distinctively influential on the congregants.

It’s our fervent prayer that Allah the most High will forgive his shortcomings, grant his soul eternal rest and reward his good deeds with jannatu firdaus. He passed on at the height of one of the most trying periods for academics in Nigeria. He struggled with terminal illness while psychologically appearing strong and resilient. He died while unable to access 7 months of his meagre wage that the government of his country is resisting to renegotiate as a brutal crackdown to its academics for lack of respect and value for a knowledge-driven society. Adieu and continue to rest in peace Prof. A. I. Yakubu.


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