PERSONALITY OF THE WEEK
Every great society can be said to be a manifestation of how powerful are the minds of its inhabitants. Therefore what determines the successful future of every society is the power of thought of its young people, those who think outside the box, who view the world beyong the narrow prism of their immediate environment, who read and who understand the actual essence of reading. In today’s edition of PW Personality of the Week, its our honour to present to you one of the young people who clamours what pure intellectualism represents. ALIYU DAHIRU ALIYU is a young scholar and poet, a TV presenter of “Kimiyya A Musulinci” at Alminhaj TV Channel and a packpage columnist at “Leadership A Yau” newspaper. He speaks to PW about himself and other things.
PW: How do we have a glimpse of Aliyu?
Aliyu : My name is Aliyu Dahiru Aliyu popularly known as Sufi or Aliyussufiy. I’m the last-born of a family of 10. I was born and raised at Aikawa Quarters of Dala Local Government in Kano State. I attended Bayero University Kano and Informatics Institute Kazaure simultaneously studying Agricultural Engineering and Information Technology respectively. In 2014, Kano state government sponsored my education at International University of East Africa in Uganda where I obtained bachelor of Information Technology. I’m currently studying (online) Islamic Theosophy and Sufism at Zaytuna College.
PW: Would you mind telling us when you started writing and what inspired you lease?
Aliyu : I started writing when I was in secondary school. At British Council in Kano, I met many writers and poets who inspired me.
PW: What do you want to achieve with writing?
Aliyu: Societal progess peaceful coexistence in multicultural and multi-religious milieu.
PW: You are a lover of philosophy, does it have any connection with poetry?
Aliyu : Poetry is a philosophy in verses. It captures imaginations and put them logically in stanzas. Many philosophers were also poets and those who weren’t poets quoted many poets in their philosophical works. Socrates (in the works of Plato) quoted Homer in many of his arguments.
PW: Are you working on a book? If yes, what is it about?
Aliyu : I’m yet to start writing a book but I wrote many essays, diaries and blogposts. People are asking me to write a book and I promise my work will be encyclopaedic.
PW: What are your thoughts about Poetic Wednesday?
Aliyu: It’s a great literary campaign. An excellent platform that gives me an opportunity to compose my mind and bring out my emotions every Wednesday.
PW: Do you think young northern writers face some challenges?
Aliyu : With the advent of social media (wikis and blogs) I don’t think so. What the young writers should do is to face the challenges of the modern communication media and develop their writings online.
PW: You often call yourself a feminist, what do you want to achieve with it?
Aliyu : An environment where the status of women can be elevated. I’m dreaming of a society that will see women as sisters, mothers and friends not sex machine or house slaves.
PW: Do you think Islam is a feminist religion? If yes, why?
Aliyu : This depends on the definition of the word “feminist”. If by “feminist” you mean a religion where a woman can turn into man, Islam is not like that. If you mean a religion that raises the status of women beyond cultural dogma and misogynists oppressions, Islam is synanymous to feminism. Islam is certainly beyond what Muslims portray it as.
PW: You are passionate about theology and socioreligious issues, how do you view the evolution of northern Nigeria through that perspective?
Aliyu: Though we are still in dark ages but I can see light at the end of the tunnel. Religious discourse is now taking a turn with intellectualism. We are passing through the same experience felt by Europe before it reached to enlightenment. Revelation and rationality are now working together to produce a tolerant and peaceful northerner.
PW: What 3 books you think have the greatest influence in your life?
Aliyu : Muqaddima by Ibn Khaldun, Ihya’u Ulumud Deen by Gazzhali and Mathnavi by Rumi.
PW: Mention 2 literary books you would suggest to everyone.
Aliyu : “My Watch” in three volumes by Olusegun Obasanjo and “The Veil and The Male Elite : A Feminist Interpretation of Women Rights in Islam” by Fatima Mernissi.
PW: Three Facebook friends you find amazing and why?
Aliyu : Selecting three out of 10k friends and followers is herculean task! However, a friend like Yakubu Musa who though older than me but gives me advices, Ibraheem A. Waziri for his words of encouragement and the naughty Aliyu Jalal (Al-Liberaliy) who amuses me. They are among my oldest friends on Facebook.
PW: Describe your growing up.
Aliyu: A boy who scouted many paths and is still searching for where to stand.
PW: Favorite childhood experience?
Aliyu : I secured first position throughout all my primary school terminal exams!
PW: Aspirations as a child?
Aliyu : To be a great mathematician.
PW: Most cherished gift and why?
Aliyu : Books, I’m bookworm.
PW: What’s the best attribute you admire in people?
PW: Role model?
Abu Hamidil Gazzhali.
PW: Last book read or reading?
I read “Critic From Within” and I’m reading “Beyond Fairy Tales”
PW: Favorite food
Aliyu: Rice with salad
PW: Parent’s treasure that keeps you going
Aliyu : My mother is always by my side.
PW: Favourite day of the week
Aliyu : Friday
PW: When free, what do you do?
Aliyu : Blogging
PW: Favorite sport or TV show
Aliyu : Documentaries.
PW: Favourite musician/artist
Aliyu : Deen Squad
PW: Favourite PW poet and why?
Aliyu: Salim Yunusa for the power of his imagination.
PW: PW crush?
Aliyu : (laughs) I don’t want her to know
PW: If you are to take a 12 hour walk with any PW member, into a desert, without phone and internet, who would that be?
Aliyu : Junaid Sharfadi.
PW: One surprising thing about you only few know.
Aliyu : Though I engage in fierce battle with fundamentalists but I don’t hate them. My religion is love.
PW: Most annoying experience, something you don’t want to remember
Aliyu: The death of my father.
PW: Do you think Nigeria encourages literature and writing?
Aliyu: I don’t think so.
PW: How do you think writers can contribute to national and societal developments?
Aliyu : By engaging into national issues intellectually and writing in blogs and newspapers.
PW: Final advice to young writers?
Aliyu : Literature is the heart of everything we should keep on doing the good job of writing.