Prof Fatima Batul Mukhtar: 1st female VC from North-West Nigeria

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Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar is an academic, educator, publisher, University administrator, and distinguished abusite. She served as the 2nd Vice-Chancellor of Federal University Dutse in office from 2016–2021 and is the first female Vice-Chancellor from the North-West geo-political zone of Nigeria.

Fatima Batul Mukhtar is a professor of Botany with a specialization in plant physiology. Her additional areas of interest include biostatistics, horticulture, agricultural biotechnology, and food security.

Prof. Fatima Batul Mukhtar was born in the city of Kano in the northern part of Nigeria. She started her primary education at Shahuchi Primary School and completed her primary education at a boarding school, Shekara Girls Boarding Primary School.

She proceeded to Government Girls College, Dala, Kano, where she obtained the West African School Certificate (WASC) in 1980. She attended Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where she graduated with a degree in Botany in 1984.

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She undertook her National Youths Service Corps at Forestry Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Kano State. She did her master’s degree at Bayero University, Kano in 1994 and afterward got employment with the same University in the Department of Biological Sciences.

She immediately enrolled for a Ph.D. program in Botany (plant physiology) which she completed in 2005. The research work was done at the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, Kano Station.

Her Ph.D. thesis was one of the three selected by the University and entered into a national competition where it scored 5th position. She also has a certificate in Agricultural biotechnology following a short course at Michigan State University, the USA in 2012.

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar’s Career

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar started working with B.U.K in 1994 as an assistant lecturer and through hard work, she rose through the ranks to become a Senior lecturer in 2003, Associate Professor in 2007 and Professor in 2010. She has taught several courses and supervised many undergraduate students.

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar on a visit to American University of Nigeria
Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar on a visit to American University of Nigeria

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar has held several academic positions in the University as a member of various faculty and departmental committees, remedial and undergraduate level coordinator from 2001 to 2002.


She was also a post-graduate level coordinator from 2002 to 2008. She served as Head of the Plant Science Department from 2012 to 2013. She is an editor to many journals and has participated in accrediting the academic programs of some tertiary institutions in the country.

She has been an external examiner for undergraduate and postgraduate programs in some Universities. She has also assessed candidates for promotion to the post of Associate professor. She was honored with two awards by her students.

In 2013 Fatima Batul Mukhtar was released on leave of absence to a newly established university, Northwest University (now Yusuf Maitama Sule University), to establish the Faculty of Science as the pioneer dean.

She has held many academic and administrative responsibilities in addition to being the Dean of the Faculty including member, Appointments, and Promotion Committee, Staff Audit Committee, Chairperson, Academic Staff Development Committee, Chairperson, Committee for the Establishment of Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences and Chairperson, Committee for the establishment of Biotechnology Programme at Northwest University, Kano.

She is a member of the Senate and Governing Council of NWU, Kano. She was in 2015 searched for the post of Vice-Chancellor of Northwest University, Kano.

In 2015, Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar was appointed the pioneer Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Northwest University, Kano. Since then she has chaired ICT Committee, Hospital Revolving Fund Committee, and Budget Monitoring and Performance Committee.

She was appointed Vice-Chancellor Federal University, Dutse on 14th February 2016. She assumed duties as the second substantive Chief Executive of the university precisely on February 16, 2016 and served in that position until 2021

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar

At the state level, she served in many committees including technical and implementation committees for the establishment of Northwest University, Kano (NWU, Kano). She also served in Kano State political transition committee in 2015 and was appointed a member of the Kano State Education Promotion Committee in the same year.

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At the National level, Professor Fatima has served as a resource person to the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) for the accreditation of Polytechnics and Colleges of Education in the Country.

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar is a distinguished researcher with more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles, some newspaper articles, and has authored 3 books; An Introduction to Biostatistics, Experimental Research Methodology, and Data Analysis in the Life Sciences and Careers in Botany.

She has supervised and co-supervised more than 30 postgraduate students at the masters’ and Ph.D. levels. She has attended many conferences both local and international and presented papers and posters. Professor Fatima has organized scientific conferences and workshops at various times.

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar founded and established the Kano Botanic Garden single-handedly in 2008. The Garden is mainly for the conservation of indigenous plants, education, public enlightenment, and leisure.

Prof Fatima Batul Mukhtar: 1st female VC from North-West Nigeria 2
Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar founded and established the Kano Botanic Garden single-handedly in 2008

She is a member of both national and international professional organizations including the Botanical Society of Nigeria and the Botanical Society of America as well as Non- Governmental organizations including, Muslim Sisters Organization, Federation of Muslim Women Association of Nigeria (FOMWAN), Women Farmers Association of Nigeria (WOFAN).

Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar founded and established the Kano Botanic Garden single-handedly in 2008 is married with 5 daughters. Her hobbies are; reading, writing, traveling, and gardening.

Achievements of Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar at FUD

According to Professor Fatima Batul Mukhtar, her ultimate vision for the institution is to; see to its growth and attainment of excellence in teaching, research and impact on the society through educational outreach programmes and focused research; develop highly skilled academic staff who can compete favourably with their counterparts from other institutions globally in scholarship and research and to produce knowledgeable, disciplined and competitive graduates, who can advance to professional or graduate programmes or be relevant in both the public and private sectors of the economy.

Under her watch, FUD has become the first among the youngest generation of federal universities to have successfully mounted the programmes of MBBS, B.Sc. Human Physiology and B.Sc. Human Anatomy.

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The institution also secured in one go, the approval of the NUC to run 11 undergraduate courses beginning from the current academic session. At the same time, the university secured the NUC’s nod to commence master’s degree courses in 15 academic programmes and Ph.D. programmes in seven courses, a feat that is unprecedented in the life of such a young university.

Under her leadership, FUD has established, in collaboration with the School of Continuing Education, Ahmadu Bello University, (ABU), Zaria, the Interim Joint Matriculation Board, (IJMB), a stop-gap arrangement aimed at offering prospective university candidates the opportunity to brighten their chances of securing admissions to the university.

This is in addition to the remedial programmes which have just been introduced to help candidates rectify their Senior School Certificate Examinations (SSCE) with a view to securing admissions to higher institutions.

Prof Fatima Batul Mukhtar is one woman who is not intimidated or feel threatened by the position she holds in academia. She walked her way to the top and deserves to be celebrated for her achievement. She is a model, achiever, and source of encouragement for thousands of other women who aspire to attain the best in their chosen fields.

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One thought on “Prof Fatima Batul Mukhtar: 1st female VC from North-West Nigeria

  • January 30, 2020 at 10:45 am

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