Hajiya Kaltume Gana, a renowned artist and designer of the famous Kano Golden Jubilee Monument, has condemned the demolition of the aesthetically designed structure by Kano State Government.
The multi-million naira monument was constructed by immediate past Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje’s administration in 2017 to commemorate Kano 50th anniversary as State in the Nigerian federation.
The unique edifice was engraved in traditional models of Kano entry gates and with artistic works depicting Hausa cultural heritage.
However, the monument which was built on the roundabout near Kano seat of power, The Government House was brought down in the early hours of Wednesday.
Reacting on the development on Friday, Kaltume said she was heart broken and unhappy over the development.
She said: “I very sad and displeased by the demolition of this monument which has become the symbol of Kano, infact it is the Face of Kano as people keep appreciating it tourism wise.”
She noted that she had been silent about the design since it’s construction in 2017, “but with the demolition now is the time to speak for my pet project.”
“I had to open up on Thursday, a day after the demolition to express my motivation and inspiration for the work, which I won the design competition in 2017,” the artist said in an emotion-laden voice.
Kaltume disclosed that the design embedded cultural and traditional arts and craft inherent in Kano as well as local patterns unique to Kanawas (Kano people), in order to achieve its distinct structure.
The designer, however, wondered what informed the decision of the government to destroyed the cultural symbol, saying “we must all condemn this thoughtless decision.”
She also lamented the action of the government and its attendant effect on creativity, adding that the government should always seek professional advice to address any observations or abnormalities on the monument.
Kaltume, who is the Curator of the National Art Gallery in Kano holds a Bachelors and Masters Degree in Fine Arts from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
She had also conducted extensive studies in Islamic Arts at Mimar Sisan University, Istanbul, Turkey.
A one-time Assistant Director, Creative Arts Department, Kano State History & Culture Bureau, and a Member of the Society of Nigerian Artists, Kaltume is the founder of the Herwa Heart of Art Initiative.
The initiative teaches children and young women affected by the Boko Haram insurgency on new vocational skills that enables them to be self-reliant.
Her works have been exhibited in Washington DC, United States, Vienna in Austria, as well as in London and some African cities.