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Zulai Daya and Hadiza Lavers: First female graduates of Yobe


From Aderoju Jonathan, Lagos and Ibrahim Ismail, Kano

Zulai Abdullahi Daya

Hajiya Zulai Daya

An educator who made history as the first female graduate of Yobe extraction (sharing the honour with Hajiya Hadiza Lavers), Hajiya Zulai Daya was born on the 1st of January 1945 in Daya, Fika Local Government area of Yobe State.
Her education started at the Daya Junior Primary School from 1951 to 1953 and then Provincial Girls School, Maiduguri between 1954 and 1959 before going for her grade 3 at the Women Teachers College in the same Maiduguri between 1961 and 1963 where she obtained her Grade 3 Certificate. Between 1965 and ’67, she was back at the Maiduguri Women Teachers College for her grade 2.
She obtained a degree in English at the then Abdullahi Bayero College, now Bayero University Kano (BUK) in 1972 having gained admission there in 1967.
She is however, the first qualified female teacher from Yobe to start teaching. The following is a brief on her working career:

  1. Taught in Damboa Primary School 1962-1964
  2. Taught in Godowoli Primary School (For 3 Months) 1965
  3. Taught in Senior Primary School Potiskum 1966-1967
  4. Headmistress Kara Primary School, Potiskum 1966-1967
  5. Taught in Yerwa Government Day Secondary School, Maiduguri 1972-1973
  6. Taught in Government Girls College, Maiduguri 1973-1978
  7. Vice Principal At Government Girls College, Maiduguri And Women Teachers College, Maiduguri 1978-1979
  8. Pioneer Principal, Government Girls Secondary School, Miringa-Biu 1979
  9. Principal, Women Teachers College, Nguru 1979-1980
  10. Ministry Of Education Headquarters, Maiduguri 1980-1984
  11. Principal Government Girls College Maiduguri 1984-1985
  12. Principal Federal Government Girls College Potiskum1985-2001
  13. Coordinating Inspector Of Education (In-Charge) 2001-2005

Hajiya Zulai Abdullahi Daya, the first female to go out of Daya village in quest of knowledge, retired from acting service and was crowned with the prestigious title of Magaram of Daya. She has five children from her marriage.

Hadiza Bomoi Lavers

Hajiya Hadiza Lavers

Another woman of substance who graduated the same year as Hajiya Zulai is Hadiza Bomoi Lavers (Nee Ciroma). Born on the 15th of June 1944 in Potiskum, Yobe State, she went to Central Primary School, Potiskum between 1952 and 1953 from where she proceeded to the Provincial Girls School, Maiduguri, from 1954 to 1958, where she got her Primary Leaving Certificate.
She was thereafter at the Post Primary Girls School between January 1959 and December of that year. From there she came back to Maiduguri and went to the Women Teachers College. She was there between January 1960 and December 1962, at the end of which she earned a Grade 3 Teacher’s Certificate.
But unlike Hajiya Zulai, Hajiya Hadiza got her Grade 2 Teacher’s Certificate from the Women Teachers College in Kano where she studied for it between January 1965 and December 1966.
She also got enrolled into the Abdullahi Bayero College, now BUK, in October 1967 and graduated with a BA English-Special Honours in June 1972.
She is the first female Headmistress from Yobe. The following is her working experience:

  • Teacher-Potiskum

Headmistress-Race Course Primary School, Potiskum     1963-1964

  • Tutor-Women Teachers College, Kano June 1972-Sept 1972
  • Headmistress, Bayero University, Kano (Staff School) 1974-1981
  • Member Yobe State Executive Council April 1996-1997 (Commissioner for Youth and Sports)


  1. Borno state scholarship board-Member 1975-1982
  2. Cubits Nigeria limited-Director 1984
  3. Ramat Polytechnic Council-Member Jan 1987-Mar 1989
  4. Borno State Hotels & Tourism-Chairman Mar 1987-July 1989
  5. Borno Express-Member 1989-1990
  6. Borno Radio and Television-member 1991-1992
  7. College of Education, Gashua-Chairman 1994-1995

Hajiya Hadiza, whose hobbies include Gardening, Reading and Cooking, married a Briton, Mr Lavers (popularly known as Bomoi Bogaru) and the marriage was blessed with four children.


This two distinguished women have contributed a lot to the development of education in the North Eastern State now sub divided into Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe States. They were role models to the girl child and challenged the boy child to sit up.
These young ones that were directly or indirectly mentored by these women of substance and those that followed in their noble footsteps are those now at the helm of affairs, reaping where they sowed, running the system.
How the system treats our distinguished retirees is a topic for another day.

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1 Comment
  1. Daniel Garba says

    That’s women of substance…. there stories is so inspiring.

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