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Advertorial; WATA RANA A SHA ZUMA , WA TA RANA A SHA MADACI: Tribute To Baba At 80!

To be like the rock that the waves keep crashing over. It stands unmoved and the raging of the sea falls still around it.” – Marcus Aurelius

Today, I pay tribute to an extraordinarily special man – who is fazed neither by criticism nor by praise; unperturbed by fortune or loss; content with little and unimpressed by wealth, power or position; averse to publicity and showmanship; self-effacing; austere and always simply dressed – customarily in white; far from the garish and the gaudy, with disdain for ostentation but neither sanctimonious nor judgmental – Malam Mamman Daura, Baba – whom I am so proud to call my father.

This tribute is about my father – Baba, my Baba – the real Malam Mamman Daura – son, husband, father, grandfather; not the ill-motivated, sponsored social media created version – preposterous and larger than life. As Baba himself would say when we would express concern about the persistent and unjustified character assassination of his person – “Do not worry. If Allah knows the truth; that is all that matters.”

I would want to provide another perspective from those closest to him – a true portrayal of the man my father is, from what my siblings and I, and our mother know him to be.
Baba is a simple yet complex man – a man of few words (which sometimes makes him come across as standoffish) but highly engaging when in his comfort zone – with family and a few close friends. With his late younger brother Baba Sani, I recall with such fondness their daily raucous and wheezy-asthmatic laughing sessions as they shared insider jokes only they understood.