MD Yusuf, the top cop who went to the shrine, and did the unthinkable, for the record!

The unthinkable in the above title was not going to Fela’s shrine, even though many people would consider it so, seeing how frequently he went there and the fact that he actually enjoyed the music of the creative genius! By the way, going to the shrine for him, was not for show or any such thing.

What was the top cop doing at the Fela’s shrine in those days? Simple answer – what top cops do. To have contacts everywhere; to have relevant intelligence from where it matters, and ensure the life-blood of effective intelligence, itself the life-blood of a good security system, was never blocked.

Mohammed Dikko Yusuf, who was more fondly called MD Yusuf, attended Government College, Zaria. Then School of Arabic Studies, Kano where he had the likes of Ado Bayero and Hamza Ahmadu

as classmates. After graduating from School of Arabic Studies, he went to the United Kingdom for further studies. Returned to Nigeria upon completion of his studies, and joined the civil service. Not long after, he was sent to the United Kingdom, where he worked as Private Secretary to Ambassador Abdulmalik Attah. This was about the time that the idea to recruit university graduates into the Nigerian Police emerged. And MD Yusuf, Adamu Suleiman and others were recruited to join a crop of elite officers. They were trained in the UK and afterwards returned to Nigeria and sent to what became the E-Branch of the Nigerian Police.

There is so much more to the life of MD Yusuf, from his distinguished career as a top cop, known and recognized across the world but one bit about him I cannot get out of my head is his manifest courage when, against the prevailing tide, he decided to run against former Head of State, General Sani Abacha, whom all five existing political parties, at the time, had adopted as their sole candidate in the presidential elections.

Many feared for him as word went round that he was calling a world press conference to announce his decision. Some media organizations pleaded with him for more time for their crew to be on ground to capture the moment. They did not want to such an unthinkable moment!

MD knew the odds were stacked heavily against him but he knew that General Abacha needed some kind of reality check. And he stepped forward for that purpose, and told the world, it was for the records. Might things change a bit, or much more, if more persons acted, for the records?

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