Not All Kings in Sokoto Caliphate Were Fulanis — History Proves

Most people have it that all kings during the Usman Danfodio reign were Fulani, but history proved that kings like Ya’qub of Bauchi, Jatau Sarkin Zazzau Malan Dantunku of Kazaure, and Agali of Konni were all non-Fulbe kings

Bauchi province was conquered between 1809 and 1818 by Fula warriors led by one Yakubu Gerawa, the son of a local ruler who had been educated at Sokoto and studied under Usman Dan Fodio. Yet Yakubu was not a Fulani by origin, but from the Gerawa tribe in Bauchi.

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It’s proved that before the Fulani jihad, Bauchi region was inhabited by a large number of small tribes, some of whom spoke languages related to Hausa, and some of whom were Muslims.

Similarly, Jatau, Sarkin Zazzau was a non-Fulani king under the caliphate. Withstanding Zaria attacks, the Jatau reign comprising Zaria and Abuja emirate remained an independent Hausa refuge. The emirate originally included four small Koro chiefdoms that paid tribute to the Hausa kingdom of Zazzau

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Malan Zaki of Katagum: Originally, it was the seat of an emirate founded around 1807 by Ibrahim Zakiyul Kalbi (aka Malam Zaki), a soldier in the Fulani jihad. In 1812, he destroyed the capital of the Kanem-Bornu Empire, Ngazargamu, northeast of Katagum, and was named king of Bornu by Usman Dan Fodio. 

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After his victory, Malam Zaki returned to the area and founded Katagum in 1814. During the mid-to-late 1820s, Bornu recaptured most of the area from the Fulani, forcing the Katagum community to evacuate in 1826. Later that year, their Kanuri tribal warriors were defeated by a joint coalition led by Yakubu, the king of Bauchi, and Dan Kauwa, Katagum’s Emir (amir), with an emirate to the south. 

These leaders were Hausas, of course, some from smaller tribes under the dominance of Hausa contrary to what many perceived as all the kings under the Sokoto caliphate were Fulani.


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