The Samaru College of Agriculture, established in 1921 and later became part of Ahmadu Bello University when the School was transferred to the then Interim Common Services Agency (ICSA) in 1968, is 100 years old today.

Honourable Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, and His Highness, the Emir of Minna, Alhaji Umar Farouq Bahago CON, joined other distinguished personalities from all walks of life to celebrate the College’s centenary at a colourful ceremony held in Zaria today.
The College started as a hands-on agricultural training centre in 1921 at Maigana, a town located about 24 kilometers away from Zaria.
At inception, it was started by the British Cotton Growers Association (BCGA) with officials of the Agricultural Research Station, a unit which later became Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), also part of Ahmadu Bello University.
The agricultural training centre, which was the first College of Agriculture in Northern Nigeria and the second in Nigeria only after the College of Agriculture, Moore Plantation, Ibadan, finally became Samaru School of Agriculture in 1932.
Speaking at the centenary celebration held at the College premises in Zaria today, the Honourable Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, congratulated the College on turning 100 years in existence as an agricultural training school that awards National Diploma and Higher National Diploma certificates.
The Minister, who was ably represented by the Director, University Education, at the Federal Ministry of Education, Mrs. Ruqayya Iliyasu, acknowledged the tremendous contribution the College had made towards Nigeria’s agricultural development.
“I bring to you warm felicitations from the Honourable Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, on the 100 years of existence of the Samaru College of Agriculture, a milestone which is worth celebrating”, the Minister said.
In his remarks at the occasion, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Kabiru Bala, explained that the success of the College led to the establishment of its sister colleges namely, College of Agriculture and Animal Science, Mando, Kaduna and Kabba College of Agriculture by the Premier of Northern Nigeria, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto in 1963 and 1964 respectively.
Also speaking, the Director, Division of Agricultural Colleges, Ahmadu Bello University, Prof. M.A. Mahadi, said that the College, which started with a mandate for educating local farmers on new farming techniques, outlived its colonial mandate and also witnessed significant transformation.
“After the colonial era, the College has been serving the post-colonial agricultural needs of Nigeria as a hub for nurturing middle level professionals in the agricultural sub-sector of the country and beyond, thereby bridging the gap between agricultural research and farmers through effective extension delivery.
“This was made possible by the purposeful re-orientation, re-organization and refocusing of the College mandate to meet the needs of the Nigerian agricultural development programme goals for achieving food security”, he said.
Prof. Mahadi also explained that the College had lived up to expectation by contributing immensely in training middle level manpower in agriculture, saying that the caliber of graduates from the College had been serving the agricultural and other sectors of the nation.
The Director listed Sir Dauda Jawara, former President of The Gambia, former Governors of Gombe and Borno States, Alhaji Abubakar Habu Hashidu and Alhaji Mala Kachalla, respectively as notable among the College alumni.
He described the occasion as a “Celebration of Excellence in all facets”, given the tremendous contribution of the College to nation building.
The College Provost, Prof. E.M. Shaibu – Imodagbe, who spoke on the historical background of the College, explained that ABU had in 1987 directed its Division of Agricultural Colleges to subject its colleges’ academic programmes to accreditation by the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) for the award of National Diploma and Higher National Diploma certificates.
He said that the College had a robust and highly motivated workforce many of whom had attained a high degree of professional capabilities to adequately train and transfer relevant agricultural skills to provide intermediate manpower that could adjust to the changing technological world.
The Provost, however, explained that the College numerous achievements were not without challenges, which according to him, were significantly based on the aged infrastructure such as inadequate water supply to the academic and hostel areas.
Highpoint of the event was the commissioning of projects and exhibition of the College invention and innovation as well as tour of the College by invited guests.
Some of the dignitaries present at the occasion included His Highness, the Emir of Minna, Alhaji Umar Farouq Bahago, who was represented by Dr. Musa Audi and representatives of TETFund and National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Dr. Yusuf Ibrahim Gamawa and Malam Salisu Abdullahi, respectively.

Public Affairs Directorate,
Office of the Vice-Chancellor,
Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
Monday, 6th December, 2021


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