Hausa Traditional Titles and Their Meanings

Traditional Hausa

Written by Editorial Staff

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August 26, 2020

Hausa traditional system has been organized and efficient even before the advent of colonialism and indirect rule in Northern Nigeria. Just like, foods and naming systems, Hausa Land have their unique traditional system of Governance. The Emirates Councils in most kingdoms are well-staffed complete with institutions supervised by the Emir or someone else.

Each Hausa Land Kingdom has its Police Force (Yan Doka, The Prisons (Gidan Yari), an intelligence-gathering network (Dubagari), Army, and many other sections that can be likened to today’s ministries and departments. For that reason, here is a list of Hausa Traditional Titles and Their Meaning.

Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello, and The Emir of Zazzau Ja’afaru Dan Isyaku discussing. Police in uniform (dan Doka) stand behind them.

Related: Traditional Hausa Names and Their Meanings

List of Traditional Titles In Hausa Land

  1. Sarki – Emir (President)
  2. Waziri – Vice President/ Prime Minister
  3. Sarkin Fada – Chief of Staff
  4. Garkuwa – Chief of Army Staff
  5. Sarkin Alkali- Chief judge
  6. Wali – Minister of Justice/ Attorney General
  7. Sarkin Ruwa – Minister of Water Resources
  8. Sarkin Noma- Minister of Agriculture
  9. Ma’aji – Accountant General
  10. Mutawalli- Minister of Finance
  11. Sarkin Kira – Minister of Power and steel.
  12. Sarkin Dogarai – Chief of Defence staff
  13. Duba Gari – DSS (Leken Asirin cikin gida)
  14. Shugaban Yan Doka- Inspector General of Police
  15. Sarkin Tsafta- Minister of Health
  16. Hakimi – Governor
  17. Mai gari – Chairman
  18. Mai unguwa – Councilor
  19. Sarkin Fawa- Head of Butchers
  20. Majalisar Sarakuna/ Majalisar Sarki – Senate or House of Representatives.
  21. Galadima – Interior Minister
  22. Sarkin Aiyuka – Minister of Works.
  23. Sarkin Noma – Minister of Agriculture.
  24. Jakadiya – Minister of Women affairs.
  25. Sarkin Yaki- Army Commander
  26. Sarkin Malamai/ Sa’i- Minister for Religious affairs/ Adviser on Religious Matters
  27. Sallama – Aide de Camp (ADC)
  28. Magatakarda – Secretary of the Federation (SGF ) or Private Secretary
  29. Sarkin Kofa – Protocol
  30. Sarkin Dawaki – Minister of Culture
  31. Madawaki-The Commander-in-Chief of Armed Forces
  32. Sarkin Samari- Minister of Youth Affairs
  33. Sarkin Hanya- Minister of Transport
  34. Shamaki- Cheif Protocol Officer
  35. Sankira- Special Adviser on Media and Publicity

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  1. Musah Mohammed Sani

    Please what is the meaning of sardauna in English

    • Abdullahi Malumfashi

      Hey, I think it means ‘commander in chief’ or ‘crown prince’ depending on the context used.


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