Zamfara State is a state located in north-western Nigeria. Its capital is Gusau. Until 1996 the area was part of Sokoto State. Although the people of Zamfara have over the years struggled to have autonomy, it was not until 1996 that the then Military Administration of the Late General Sani Abacha detached Zamfara State from the former Sokoto State.
Zamfara is largely inhabited by Hausa and Fulani tribes. Other major tribes include the Zamfarawa mainly from Anka, Gummi, Bukkuyum and Talata Mafara Local Governments areas. Gobirawa from Shinkafi Local Government. Gobirawa are those who actually migrated from the Gobir Kingdom. Burmawa are found in Bakura and Fulani are found in Bungudu, Maradun, Gusau and are also scattered all over the State. While in Tsafe, Bungudu and Maru Local Governments are found Katsinawa, Garewawa and Hadejawa. While Alibawa are found in Kaura Namoda and Zurmi.
Zamfara state has an area of 39,762 square kilometers. It has a population of 3,602,356 according to the 1991 census and contains fourteen local government areas. The state is bordered in the North by Niger republic, to the South by Kaduna State. In the east it is bordered by Katsina State and to the West by Sokoto and Niger States.
Zamfara state was one of the old Hausa city-states like Kano, Katsina, Gobir, Kabi and Zazzau. It extends up to the bend of River Rima to the north west and River Ka in the south west.
Zamfara Kingdom was established in the 11th century and flourished up to 16th century as a city-state. Its capital has shifted with the fortunes of the kingdom from place to place like Dutsi and Birnin Zamfara. In the first half of the 18th century, its then capital Birnin Zamfara, was destroyed by the Gobir Kingdom and a new capital was established in Anka by the second half of the 19th century.
Zamfara had many centers of commerce and scholarship that attracted many scholars like the Yandoto city. It became part of the Sokoto Caliphate after the 1804 jihad by Usman dan Fodio. In fact, Usman Danfodiyo settled in Sabon Gari where Sarkin Zamfara Abarshi had already established a garrison headquarters during the early days of his Jihad as a base from where he fought Gobir and Kabi.
At the wake of British colonialism, the emerging town of Gusau became an important commercial and administrative center with road and rail networks passing through it. With the creation of States during the Gowon Administration, Zamfara Kingdom became part of the then North West State and latter Sokoto State.
The climate of Zamfara is warm tropical with temperature rising up to 38oC between March to May. Rainy season starts in late May to September while the cold season known as Harmattan lasts from December to February.
Local Government Areas
Zamfara state has a total of 14 local government areas as follows; Anka, Bakura, Birnin Magaji, Bukkuyum, Bungudu, Tsafe, Gummi, Gusau, Kaura Namoda, Maradun, Maru, Shinkafi, Talata Mafara and Zurmi
The state has 17 emirate councils as institutions of the traditional rulers or Emirs. The emirates are as follows;
Anka, K/Namoda, Zurmi, Moriki, Bukkuyum, Gummi, Bakura, Maru, Dan Sadau, Bungudu, Kotarkoshi, B/Magaji, Shinkafi, Gusau, Talata Mafara, Maradun, Tsafe.
Zamfara State is mainly populated by Hausa and Fulani people. However there are some other members of Gwari, Kambari, and Zabarmawa ethnic communities. Others include the Igbo, Yoruba, Kanuri, Nupe and Tiv.
Agriculture is the most predominant and important occupation of the people of the state, hence its slogan "farming is our pride".
Islam is the principal and major religion of the people of Zamfara state. Zamfara was the first state in Nigeria to re-introduce Shari’ah law.
English is the official language of the state. The main language spoken in a Zamfara is Hausa. Other languages spoken are Fulfulde and Arabic.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia