Dr. Habiba Muda Lawal is a seasoned administrator, a philanthropist, a woman of substance, a mentor to many, An exceedingly intelligent woman, a professional, an erudite scholar, a gender advocate, and a distinguished Abusite who initiated and facilitated the development of the National Gender Policy and its Implementation Framework.
Dr Habiba Muda Lawa was born on 3rd June 1963 to the family of Alhaji Garkuwa Adamu at Bununu, Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area of Bauchi State.
Dr. Habiba attended the Gyamzo Primary School, Toro from 1970 -1976 for her First School Leaving Certificate. She then proceeded to the Federal Government College Kaduna, where she came out with Grade I in the West African School Certificate from 1976 – 1981; while there, she won the Isa Kaita Service Award as House Prefect.
She thereafter enrolled at the great Ahmadu Bello University Zaria from 1982 to 1986 for B.Sc. Chemistry; there, she won the Nigerian Tobacco Company Prize for the Best Year II Student 1984/1985, the Imperial Chemical Industries Prize for the Best Graduating Student in Chemistry (Second Class Upper) and the Imperial Chemical Industries Prize for the Best Graduating Project 1985/1986.
In 1991, Dr Habiba Muda Lawal obtained a Master’s Degree in Inorganic Chemistry from ABU, Zaria and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi (1997). She also holds a Certificate in Professional and Personal Competence in Women’s Development from the University of East Anglia, Norwich, Britain. All these prepared her for the task ahead.
Dr Habiba Muda Lawal’s Career
Dr Habiba Muda Lawal, An exceedingly intelligent woman, a professional, an erudite scholar, gender advocate, and administrator started her working career in 1987 as a Graduate Assistant at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University where she rose to the position of Senior Lecturer in 1999.
While in the University, she held various academic responsibilities such as Member of University Senate, Departmental Exam Officer, Project/Records Officer, and Post Graduate Officer. While serving in the University in 1998, she was appointed Commissioner for Commerce, Industry, and Tourism by the Bauchi State Government.
In 2001, Dr Habiba Muda Lawal went on secondment from ATBU to the National Centre for Women Development, Abuja as Director Planning Research and Statistics, a Parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs. Dr. Habiba joined the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, where she headed the Women Affairs Department, in August 2005.
She initiated and facilitated the development of the National Gender Policy and its Implementation Framework.
She had a stint at the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology before moving to the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to Mr. President on the Millennium Development Goals (OSSAP – MDGs) in 2008 where she was responsible for tracking MDGs Sectoral and DRG Funded Ministries, Department and Agencies.
Due to her drive to achieve excellence, Dr. Habiba was appointed by the then Head of the Civil Service of the Federation in 2009 to head/facilitate the Public Sector Capacity Building Programme (training of officers in the Federal Civil Service) funded under the Debt Relief Gains of the MDGs,
The hardworking, diligent, resourceful and focused professional was promoted as Director, Training and Development, in the Manpower Development Office of the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation in 2010.
She became a Permanent Secretary on February 18, 2013, and was posted to the Federal Ministry of Women& Social Development (FMWSD), where she served from March 13, 2013, to 7th November 2014; Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (Special Services Office), 7th November 2014 to 10th November 2015; Ministry of Science & Technology, 10th November 2015 to 5th August 2016 and Ecological Fund Office, August 5, 2016, till date.
As the most senior Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, She was mandated to step in as the Acting Secretary to the Government of the Federation on Wednesday 19th April 2017, following the suspension of Engr. Babachir David Lawal. A position, she held till 30th October, 2017 when a new Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha was appointed.
Dr. Habiba Muda Lawal returned to the Ecological Fund Office, (EFO), Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, (SGF) where she served as the 15th Permanent Secretary.
After her retirement from the civil service, President Muhammadu Buhari in August 2022, appointed Habiba Muda Lawal, as Special Adviser to the President, on policy and coordination. A woman of grace and poise, who remains a source of inspiration to many young women, is one of the few Amazons in the Presidency.
Dr Habiba Muda Lawal is a British Chevening Scholar, Fellow of the Chemical Society of Nigeria, Fellow of the Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD), Fellow, Chemical Society of Nigeria, Member, Science Association of Nigeria, Member, Institute of Development Administration and an Alumni of America International Visitors Program.
She contributed greatly to the building of the Toro Central mosque along with her son Hon. Umar Muda Lawal
Dr Habiba Muda Lawal is a mother, wife, a seasoned administrator, a philanthropist, a woman of substance, a mentor to many. While in academia she was actively involved in community development as a Member of the National Association of University Women and Federation of Muslim Women Association of Nigeria.
She is happily married and blessed with 5 Children and six grand children.