Biography of the New Emir of Zazzau Alhaji Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli

Facts about the New Emir of Zazzau

Written by Editorial Staff

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October 7, 2020

The Governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir Elrufai has earlier announced the appointment of Magajin Garin Zazzau, Alhaji Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli as the new Emir of Zazzau.

The newly appointed emir is the 19th Fulani Emir of Zazzau and the first to rule from the Mallawa dynasty since 1921 when Emir Aliyu Dan Sidi reigned. Bamalli will be succeeding the late Emir, Alhaji Shehu Idris who died after ruling for 45 years.

The appointment laid to rest contention from the major candidates and rumors from certain quarters that the Governor planned on balkanizing the emirate just like his counterpart in Kano did.

Who is The New Emir of Zazzau Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli?

Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli’s Lineage

Ahmad Bamalli traces his origin to the Mallawa dynasty. Alhaji Nuhu Bamalli is the son of Malam Auta Yero who is the son of Malam Abubabar Dardau, the last son of Malam Musa Bamalli, the first Fulani Emir of Zazzau. On his mother’s side, he is a descendant of Shehu Usman Danfodio through Malam Abdulrahman Dikko Turaki Babba of Zazzau who is a grandson of Sultan of Sokoto, Aliyu Babba.

Alhaji Nuhu Bamalli

His father, Nuhu Bamalli was an important figure in the struggle for independence. He was appointed a junior minister in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in 1960. He later became the Foreign Minister in 1965.

The Late Magajin Garin Zazzau, Ahmad Bamlli’s Father Nuhu Bamalli. He Was Once Worked as a Staff at Gaskiya Corporation Zaria.

He addressed the UN General Assembly in New York that same year as Nigeria’s Foreign Minister. Nuhu Bamalli held the title of Magajin Garin Zazzau, one of the senior royal titles in the Emirate. He also worked at Gaskiya Corporation where he served as an assistant book between 1940-1947. He was a contemporary of Malam Abubakar Imam, Ibrahim Dasuki who later became the Sultan of Sokoto and others. Nuhu Bamalli wrote books such as Bala da Babiya, Mungo Park Mabudin Kwara. He also translated the Nigerian Constitution into Hausa.

He died in 2001 at the age of 81. Nuhu Bamalli left behind 10 children, one of whom is the current Emir of Zazzau Alhaji Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli.

The Late Nuhu Bamalli Adressing the United Nations General Assembly as Nigeria’s Foreign Minister


The new Emir Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli was born on June 8, 1966, in Zaria city to the family of Alhaji Nuhu Bamalli. Alhaji Bamalli attended three primary schools. He attended LEA Primary school in Kwarbai in Zaria, LEA Maiduguri Road Kaduna, and LEA Kofar Gayan. He also attended Government College Kaduna. Alh. Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli then proceeded to Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he studied Law in 1989. He later obtained a Masters’s degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from the same institution in 2002.

Bamalli also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Enugu State University of Science and Technology which he obtained in 1998. Alhaji Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli also has a Diploma from Lagos Bussiness School. He also holds a master’s degree in International Relations and Diplomacy and a diploma in Organisational Leadership from Oxford University. He is also a fellow of the Conflict Resolution of the University of York, United Kingdom (UK).

The newly appointed Emir also attended Harvard and Oxford universities as well as Northwestern University in Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania. 

Ahmad Bamalli’s Professional Experience

Even though the new Emir is a trained lawyer by profession, he spent most of his life in the banking sector. He is a Senior Chevening Fellow with about twenty-six years of cognate experience covering Banking, Public Sector, Telecommunications, and Manufacturing.

Alhaji Bamalli first started work at NICON Insurance for a few months before he moved to Lagos where he spent 10 years. Alhaji Ahmad Bamalli was first an assistant manager at KMC Nigeria limited/First Security Discount House (FSDH) between 1992-1998.

Bamalli later became the Regional Manager Public Sector FSB International Bank Plc where he Joined as a Deputy Manager in 1998 and rose through the ranks to become senior manager Grade between 1998-2006. In 2006, he moved on to the Abuja Metropolitan Management Authority as an Assistant Director where he worked under the current Governor of Kaduna state, Malam Elrufai while he was minister of the FCT.

Ahmad Bamalli then joined the Telecommunications sector when a new government came as a General Manager, Human Resources Management at the now-defunct Nigerian Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTEL) between 2007-2009 on the recommendation of his relative, Yariman Zazzau Alhaji Mannir Ja’afaru who was then on the Board of the company. The current Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmad Shamsuna was the General Manager Finance of the Company.

He later became an executive director in charge of corporate services at the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting, between 2011-2012. He subsequently became the managing director on the board of directors, where he served for almost two years. The deposed Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi served as Chairman of the Board by virtue of him being the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.


After his stint in the public service, Bamalli moved on to Oxford University to obtain a Diploma in Organizational Leadership. He was still at the university when he was invited to be on the transitional committee of the current Governor of Kaduna.

After serving meritoriously on the transition committee, the Government decided not to let him go. He was subsequently appointed a Commissioner Kaduna State Independent Electoral Commission where he was in charge of 4 electoral zones in the sate and saddled with the additional responsibility of being in charge of Finance.

While he was still serving, the Muhammadu Buhari led administration appointed him Nigerian ambassador to Thailand with concurrent accreditation to Myanmar.

Bamalli as an Ambassador 

Ahmad Bamalli joined the Nigerian Foreign Service — where his father once held sway as the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the 1960s— in 2017. To him, he was no stranger to diplomacy. Apart from his father, his younger brother was also a career diplomat who served in Ireland and Ghana.

Bamalli was responsible for re-shaping Nigeria- Thailand relationships, most especially after the ban on imported farm produce was announced by the Federal Government. Thailand, a popular rice exporter was naturally affected.

Mr. Bamalli also had the unenviable role of being the ambassador in Myanmar when the Rohingya Genocide occurred. The ambassador must have provided the President with vital information on the Genocide, as the President condemned it in his speech at the United Nations in 2017.

Contention For the Throne of Zazzau

By virtue of him being a prince in the Kingdom of Zazzau, Ahmad Bamalli was one of the main contenders for the throne. Speculations have been going around since the demise of the late Emir about his possible successor. Even though Bamalli, held the senior royal title of Magajin Gari, he wasn’t among the top three contenders chosen by the Kingmakers for eventual confirmation.

The Then Magajin Garin Zazzau Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli During a Durbar in Zaria

The Iyan Zazzau Alhaji Alhaji Bashir Aminu and the Yarima, Alhaji Munir Ja’afaru were seen by many as the main contenders. Both their parents, Alhaji Muhammad Aminu and Ja’afaru Dan Isyaku were Emirs. Bamalli’s father Alhaji Nuhu Bamalli never ascended to the throne.

According to some, he was the clear favorite of the Governor. Rumour has it that the former Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammad Sanusi was enlisted to convince the Kingmakers to vote for Bamalli.

Ahmad Bamalli originates from the Mallawa dynasty of Zaria and has a claim to the throne. His grandfather Malam Auta Yero is the son of Malam Abubabar Dardau. Malam Dardau is the last son of Malam Musa Bamalli who is the first Fulani Emir of Zazzau.

Malam Auta Yero, Ahmad Bamalli’s Grandfather

Ahmad Bamalli’s Family

Ahmad Bamalli is the third child out of the 13 children of his father. However, only 10 are alive. One of his siblings, Muazu is a seasoned banker and a manager at the Central Bank of Nigeria. Another Aliyu, is a manager at Legacy Pensions in Kaduna. The new Emir is happily married to Mairo A. Bamalli. They are blessed with five children, one boy, and four girls.

Allah Ya ja zamanin Sarki.

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