Jifatu: An entrepreneur of repute
By Musa Diso
The beauty of life does not depend on how long one lives on earth, but to a great extent on how one is able to impact positively on the lives of others and by extension his nation.
In other words, a man can be described as successful and fulfilled in life if he has been able to deploy his God-given resources to make life better and meaningful for others who are less privileged.
Such is the story of Sabitu Jifatu, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Jifatu General Enterprise.
His life perhaps speak volume of success not because of his cool-headed approach to issues and his seemingly inexhaustible reservoir of experience, he definitely has Midas touch.
Alhaji Jifatu, whose full name is Sabitu Muhammad Yahaya, is a household name in the nation’s business circle and others across the globe.
In short, he is a universal business man of repute, whose business tentacles have spread across the Sahara and the Atlantic.
Born in 1962 in Jifatu of Kaita Local Government Area of Katsina State to the family of Malam Lawali Jifatu, the son of Malam Rabi’u Ibn Malam Ali Jifatu, he became very versed in the Qur’anic education, which he started since he was four years old under his late father, who was also a very learned in Qur’an.
Later, while growing up, the zeal for more Arabic knowledge saw him at Dambatta Local Government Area of Kano State under the care of late Malam Ashiru Dambatta, where he completed and memorized the Glorious Qur’an.
Soon he began peddling in commercial goods in combination with rainy and dry season farming.
To increase his knowledge, he embraced adult education from primary to secondary school and clinched a National Diploma in Islamic Sharia Law at Sheikh Ibrahim El-rayya College of Education.
In 1982, he began full business ventures in his little town of Jifatu and later expanded to Funtua in the same Katsina State. That was in 1984.
In 1987, he went to the holy land of Saudi Arabia to perform pilgrimage where he spent about a year transacting business among other pilgrims.
He returned to Kano in 1987 where he expanded his business ventures among other prominent business associates like Alhaji Audu Aminu and Alhaji Abdullahi Mai Kwado.
Later, he spread his business ventures to Saudi Arabia, Syria, India, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Britain and other Asian countries, including the Middle East.
At that time, he was more involved in the import and export activities.
In the year 2003, Jifatu modernized his business with the establishment of Jifatu General Enterprises and Jifatu Departmental Stores later.
He opened other modern departmental stores in Gusau, Zamfara State, Katsina, in Katsina State, including others at the popular Singer Market in Kano metropolis, and also Kantin Kwari Market and another along Obasanjo Road Kano as well as Bauchi, the capital of Bauchi State.
Other branches soon to be on stream are Jigawa and Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
Jifatu is today a proud CEO of Jifatu Construction Company Limited, Jifatu Air Service Limited, Jifatu Agro-Allied Company Limited and Jifatu Charitable Foundation.
Interestingly, also these ventures were safely established by him without any bank loan or any collaboration with other business men. These and many more are some of the sterling qualities that endowed him with other notable businessmen and women, including many prominent personalities within and outside the country.
A philanthropist to the core, his Midas touch is extended to the needy across all the segment of the society. These include scholarship to students, widows, orphans, and the disabled; sponsoring of teachers to further their education in the countries outside Nigeria; building of hospitals and stocking them with drugs and medical equipment across the Northern part of the nation and sponsoring Islamic tutors to widen their knowledge in universities like Bayero University, Kano.
Others are sponsoring media activities like Islamic programmes in various radio and television stations across country; distribution of food items to the less privileged annually, particularly during the month of Ramadan; paying off medical bills for the sick in hospitals in Nigeria and abroad and offering jobs to the unemployed as well as giving them capital to set their own small scale ventures if the need arises.
His exemplary human character can best be imagined. He is one who prefers to fend for himself than depend on anyone. His friendly disposition has endured him to all calibers of people – big or small, young or old, men or women of all faiths without discrimination.
A devoted religious faithful, Jifatu detests deceit, animosity and ill feelings towards others and his doors are always open to all Nigerians, irrespective of their various religious, tribal or social backgrounds.
Above all, his obedient to his parents, right from childhood, has been a major contributor to his success in life.
Diso is freelancer with The Triumph.