For the third time in less than three months, President Muhammadu Buhari has presented a national award to Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum.
In the latest award yesterday (Thursday) at the Eagle Square in Abuja, Zulum was named Governor of the Year, 2022, for aggressive efforts to revive Agricultural activities in Borno State, especially in communities Boko Haram terrorists had occupied.
The National Agricultural Land Development Authority, NALDA instituted the award.
Zulum is a Professor of Irrigation Engineering who deals with the sourcing and controlling of water for artificial supply to soil for dry season farming also deals with scientific designing, controlling and harnessing of natural water for dry season agricultural purposes.
President Buhari, represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, handed the award to Governor Zulum in the presence of many personalities.
Before this third award, Buhari had, by himself on October 21, 2022, presented the Nigeria Excellence Award in Public Service (NEAPS) to Governor Zulum, amongst 44 recipients.
That event took place at the Banquet Hall of the presidential villa in Abuja where former President Goodluck Jonathan and Rivers Governor, Nysom Wike, were amongst those who received similar honours.
The NEAPS honour came just ten days after a bigger one.
Buhari had, on October 11, 2022, conferred a national honour of CON (Commander of the Order of the Niger) on Governor Zulum.
The President at the International Conference Centre (ICC) in Abuja decorated 440 Nigerians and seven foreigners with different categories of the national honour.
Speaking on the latest award as Agric Governor of the Year, Zulum thanked NALDA for identifying him and he commended the authority’s executive secretary, Prince Paul Ikonne, for supporting Borno’s reopening of farms for safe agriculture.
“Food insecurity is the worst form of insecurity, therefore for us in Borno State, the activities of NALDA is helping our efforts to address the root causes of insurgency. Let me commend the Executive Secretary of NALDA for all the contributions he has been making towards the development of agriculture”, Zulum said.
The NALDA award event was attended by President Muhammadu Buhari who was represented by Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, Minister of State FCT, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, Minister of State Agriculture, Mahmood Abubakar, Hungarian Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr Saider Beer, and the Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, James Christoff.
Governor Zulum, a fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers has received more than 20 awards and honours which include fellowship of National Post Graduate Medical College, University of Ibadan Alumni of the year, an award from the Nigerian Institution of Agricultural Engineering, Ordre National Du Niger Grand Officer from the President of Niger Republic which is Nigeria’s equivalent of Grand Commander of the Order of Niger (GCON) and he is winner of the Zik Prize for Leadership.
Zulum has variously been named by editors of prominent Nigerian newspapers for different categories of awards.
The governor once emerged as Vanguard Newspapers Personality of the Year, Leadership Newspapers’ Personality of the Year, Tell Magazine’s Governor of the Year, Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) Governor of the year, Anglican Church Leadership Award, LASU Honorary Doctorate Award and Honorary Doctorate of Letters (LLD), Honoris Causa from Afe Babalola University amongst other awards.