The Abdullahi Smith Centre for Historical Research was conceived in 1986 by Yusufu Bala Usman, M. D. Yusufu and George Kwanashie. It was named after the renowned Professor of History who came to Ahmadu Bello University from the University of Ibadan to found the History Department at A.B.U. He was also the Pioneer Director of the Arewa House Centre for Documentation and Historical Research in Kaduna. He supervised many Ph.D. theses, including those of Sa’ad Abubakar, Yusufu Bala Usman, Kyari Tijani, Mahmud Modibbo Tukur and many others. Together with his students, he built the History Department at A.B.U. into the premier history department in the country. Their path-breaking researches into the history of Nigeria have influenced the way historical processes have been conceptualized, in opposition to colonial historical frameworks which distorted the true history of Nigeria. The Abdullahi Smith Centre sponsored a number of important historical studies and publications whose influence has been critical in the subsequent study of Nigerian History. The Centre continues to support and publish important historical research. Some of its publications are listed on this website.
However, the founders of the Abdullahi Smith Centre soon realized that a broader research institute focusing on social scientific research was needed in order to develop solutions to the many contemporary problems in the country including the issue of deepening democracy and empowering citizens to claim their legitimate place in the governance of the country. Hence, CEDDERT was founded for this purpose. Abdullahi Smith Centre and CEDDERT are thus sister institutions, with some overlap in personnel, and work hand in hand to achieve their objectives. Indeed, Dr. Bala Usman was the founding Director of Abdullahi Smith Cente and founding Chairman of CEDDERT.
Trustees of Abdullahi Smith Centre
Ahmed Modibbo Mohammed, Secretary
Jimada Sha’ aba
Monday Y. Mangvwat