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Samory Toure: A legendary African Muslim king who fought French Colonialism

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Samory Toure: A legendary African Muslim king who fought French Colonialism
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Samory Toure: A legendary African Muslim king who fought French Colonialism

Described as African Napoleon, Samory Toure built a Muslim empire fighting off the French colonisation of West Africa in the 19th Century.

Toure’s rise is one of the inspiring examples of resistance in times of the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade, which heavily influenced West Africa between the 19th and early 20th centuries.

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Born in present day Guinea in 1830s, his father was a trader and Toure followed in his footsteps at the age of 15. During these years, he contacted many Islamic scholars and applied the model of Islamic finance to his trading business.

In 1853, his life took a major turn with the kidnapping of his mother by the leader of the powerful Cisse clan. To save her, he quit trading and signed up to be a personal slave of the clan leader, his mother’s captor, serving him for seven years, seven months and seven days. His mother was eventually released for his work as a slave. While learning the Quran and increasing his knowledge in Islamic education, he also acquired military skills. He took part in several campaigns under the command of local clan chiefs.

By 1855, Toure returned to his native place and in the next six years he gathered volunteers from the Camara clan. He gave them both military training and Islamic education. In the following years, he became the most powerful military and political leader in the Milo region. He promoted his friends and relatives to various leadership positions in his army.

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His military prowess contributed to his expansion from Bamako, Mali, in the north, to the frontiers of Sierra Leone, the Ivory Coast, and Liberia in the east and south. In the 1880s he divided his lands into 162 counties and placed his relatives at the top. He made Islamic scholars advisors to the government officials. In 1884, he took the title of Almami, meaning the religious head of a Muslim empire.

He commanded an army of between 40,000 to 65,000 soldiers. He first imported weapons from the British colony Sierra Leone and later founded a gun factory with the help of soldiers who had left the British and French troops. He even captured gold mines near the Sierra Leone-Guinea border, becoming one of the richest kings in the region.

As Toure’s realm expanded in the region, he tried to reestablish the historic Mali Kingdom, which existed in Western Africa from 1235 to 1670 and whose rulers and royals were believed to be wealthy and generous.

He became known as a devoted Muslim with impressive social ethics. He sent Quran teachers to almost all the villages of his region to spread Islamic understanding. He personally monitored many students of the Quran, testing their knowledge of the holy book, rewarding the most successful ones.

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The students who graduated from the Islamic school played a key role in spreading the word of Islam across the region. Therefore, in Guinea, the Ivory Coast, Mali, Sierra Leone and Liberia, Islam spread rapidly in the late 19th Century, when Toure ruled the region.

In 1881, as French forces clashed with his soldiers, he gave a befitting reply to the invaders. The gallant efforts made by Toure’s army to repel the French invasion helped him earn a nickname — the Napoleon of Africa.

Two years later, however, he couldn’t prevent another French invasion in Bamako.

Following the partition of Africa due to the Berlin Conference in 1884, French troops began encroaching on Mandinka. Despite his army initially defeating the French troops, it was pushed back into the West African interior. French troops often included Senegalese troops to build a strong attack against Toure’s army.

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Toure’s forces inflicted massive damage upon French troops in 1885 in Bure. But as France was decisive in its invasion of West Africa, Toure signed three deals with them. After signing the first agreement in 1886, he left Bure, and a year after he handed over the control of the west bank of Niger to France.

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Toure signed the last agreement with France in 1889 and left the area from Tisinko to the Niger River. However, in 1891, France attacked Toure again and he was obliged to leave most important parts of his country to France, including his capital.

Because of the growing French threat against him, he retreated back to the northern sides of the Ivory coast. He targeted Muslim forces who had collaborated with France during his retreat.

By 1898 he had moved to Liberia, as Britain refused to support his resistance against France by denying him the supply of weapons. Toure formed a second empire and established its new capital in the city of Kong, Upper Ivory Coast. On May 1, 1898, when French forces seized the town of Sikasso, just north of the new empire, Toure and his army took up positions in the Liberian forests to resist a second invasion.

This time, however, famine and desertion weakened his forces and the French seized Toure on September 29, 1898. He was sent to Ndjole in Gabon where he died in exile in 1900.

Guinea’s first president Ahmed Sekou Toure was claimed to be Samory Toure’s great grandson. Ahmed played a key role in the African independence movement.

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Credit: United States of Africa

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Eid-El-Fitr: Deputy Governor of Kebbi Task On Peaceful Coexistence.

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the Kebbi State Deputy Governor Dr. Sama'ila Yombe Dabai addressing newsmen shortly after a program
Eid-El-Fitr: Deputy Governor of Kebbi Task On Peaceful Coexistence.
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Eid-El-Fitr: Deputy Governor of Kebbi Task On Peaceful Coexistence.

In his message to commemorate the 2021 Eid-El-Fitr, His Excellency, Dr Sama’ila Yombe Dabai mni (Tambarin Zuru), the Deputy Governor of Kebbi State has charged Muslim faithfuls around the globe on peaceful co-existence and implore the virtues of Holy Month of Ramadan and beyond.

While fielding questions from journalists after Eid El Fitr prayers on Thursday, Dr. Samaila Yombe Dabai used the medium to commend the efforts and leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Bagudu of Kebbi state respectively.

the Kebbi State Deputy Governor Dr. Sama'ila Yombe Dabai addressing newsmen shortly after a program

the Kebbi State Deputy Governor Dr. Sama’ila Yombe Dabai addressing newsmen shortly after a program

The Deputy Governor further extended warm appreciations to Royal fathers of Kebbi State for their regular support to the policies and programs of the State Government.

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On insecurity situation in the State with emphasis on Kebbi South, Sama’ila Yombe Dabai stressed that Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu will not relent on the efforts of the State Government toward sustaining the peace while using the medium to call on bad elements launching attacks on the innocent citizens to either stop or face full wrath of the law.

The Deputy Governor prayed for the repose of all departed souls while renewing his call to see the prime purpose of life here on Earth and hereafter.

 

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Dr Isah Salifu bags traditional title in hometown as Omachi Ejeh Dekina, (Wali).

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The new Omachi Ejeh of Dekina, Dr Isah Salifu
Dr Isah Salifu bags traditional title in hometown as Omachi Ejeh Dekina, (Wali).
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Dr Isah Salifu bags traditional title in hometown as Omachi Ejeh Dekina, (Wali).

Recognition will always come to the diligent and the selfless. Sometimes, it comes from outside one’s community or from within, as is the case with Dr Isah Salifu.

Dr Salifu, ECOBANK zonal manager, was yesterday  conferred with the traditional title of Omachi Ejeh of Dekina. To some, it may just be a title. But to the Igalas, it holds a lot of importance.  Its meaning is Gifted Child. The title was conferred by no other than the Ejeh of Dekina and acting Chairman, Igala Area Traditional Council Dr Usman Obaje.

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The monarch emphasized that the Zonal Ecobank manager Dr Isah Salifu  deserved the title for his unprecedented positive contribution to the development of Igala Kingdom and Dekina in particular.

The new Omachi Ejeh of Dekina, Dr Isah Salifu

The new Omachi Ejeh of Dekina, Dr Isah Salifu

The event which took  place on the second date of the Eid-el-Fitr period in Ejeh Palace Dekina, have the presence of Engr Musa Wada immediate past Peoples Democratic Party PDP  Kogi state gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Idris Omede, the former commissioner for Health Kogi state, Dr Tony Okpanachi MD Development Bank of Nigeria, Chief Dr Kashim Akor, DG National Productivity Centre, Mallam Nasiru Adeboh, former Chief of staff to Governor Idris Wada, Prof. Armstrong Idacahab acting DG, National Broadcasting Commission, Alhaji Hassan Ibrahim, of Supreme Court Nigeria, Hon Sadiq Abubakar, ICDA President , Hon Abdulahi Omede among  other prominent sons and daughters of the noble Igala kingdom.

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The Monarchs who graced the auspicious occasion include His Royal Highnesses, Ogohi of Anyigba, Alhaji Shaibu Okolo, Oyeigba of Mozum, and others.

The recipient of the prestigious award, Dr Salihu, stressed that the Ejeh had demonstrated his passion and commitment to a united and egalitarian Society, “I am appreciative of the recognition of my contributions to nation building and I pledge my continued loyalty to Ejeh in  Council, Igala traditional institution Kogi State and Nigeria at large.”

Dr Isah said “The honour is timely and encouraging, insisting that the honour would encourage him to sustain his good works.”

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Afenifere 4 GYB/PYB 2023: Kogi State Chapter Describes Gov. Bello as Best Choice for the Country

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Afenifere 4 GYB/PYB 2023: Kogi State Chapter Describes Gov. Bello as Best Choice for the Country

 

By: Joshua Adinoyi

A Group known as Afenifere for GYB/PYB 2023, Kogi State Chapter, says Governor Yahaya Bello remains the right choice to lead Nigeria come 2023.

The State Coordinator of the Group, Mr. Chinga Emmanuel made the remark during a meeting of the Group in Lokoja, the State Capital.

Mr. Chinga pointed out that since Governor Yahaya Bello assumed Office, alot of transformation has taken place in the State, ranging from rural electrification, road construction, appointment of youths into positions, among others.

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The State Coordinator noted that Nigeria today, is yearning for change of leadership, stressing that Governor Bello represents the youthful mind the Country needs, assuring that if elected as President in the coming Presidential election, a lot of positive changes will be witnessed in Nigeria.

Mr. Chinga expressed optimism that the issue of insecurity facing Nigeria will become a thing of the past with Governor Bello leading the Country, assuring that the Group will not relent efforts at promoting the activities of the Governor to the the outer world and ensure his success at the Presidential polls.

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He explained that few weeks after the inauguration of executives of Kogi State of the Group, over 3,000 members have been added to the Group, calling on all Kogites within and outside the State to join the movement.

Mr. Emmanuel stressed that the Group will continue to mobilize youths across the 21 Local Government Areas of the State to join the project, adding that Governor Yahaya Bello’s believe in the youths’ ability to deliver is second to none.

 

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