General

VON Board, Management mourn deceased Executive Director IT

The News of the death of Mohammed Usman has come to the Boards of Directors, Management and Staff of Voice of Nigeria as a very rude shock.

The late Usman retired from Voice of Nigeria, as an Executive Director, Information Communication Technology (ICT), after a meritorious broadcasting service. He earlier served with the Voice of America.

He played a vital role in ensuring that Voice of Nigeria was taken to a very high level especially in the website, e-administration and digital broadcasting. His coming to Voice of Nigeria was a game changer in the field of ICT.

Usman was the pioneer Director of the ICT in Voice of Nigeria and was later appointed the Executive Director, ICT.

A statement signed by the VON’s Director General, Mr. Osita Okechukwu said; ”Whilst our hearts bleed with sorrow, we take solace that we cannot question the will of Almighty Allah.”

”May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace as we pray God to grant him eternal rest and grant the family the fortitude to bear this irrepairable loss,” the statement added.

The veteran Broadcaster and Engineer died on Monday, after a brief illness in Numan, Adamawa State.

He was born on 10th January, 1960 in Mubi Local Government Area of the State, where he had his primary education at Numan III Primary School in 1971 and completed it in 1976.  He thereafter gained admission into Comprehensive Secondary School, Numan in 1976 and spent only two years before proceeding to Government Technical Secondary School in 1978.

Brilliant and unrelenting, the young Usman finished from Technical Secondary School in  1981 and worked briefly with the former Gongola Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), Yola.

Ever eager to pursue his academics, he left the shores of the country to United Kingdom where he attended the London School of Radio Television Studies from 1983 to 1984. He returned home in 1984 and joined GBC Yola as a producer III heading Hausa and Fulfulde Languages. That was the position he held until 1987 when he was awarded a scholarship to study Broadcasting and Cinema at Columbia College, Hollywood by the defunct Gongola State Government. While still at the London School of Radio Television Studies, Mohammed Usman also joined, Columbia College, Hollywood, Los Angeles California, USA in 1988.  He was in the college between 1988-1992 he graduated with Bachelor of Arts in Broadcasting and Cinema. At the time of his graduation from CCHW, he had reached the exemption age from National Youth Corp Service (NYSC) programme.

After one and half years of study in the United Kingdom, he joined the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), London in 1990 as its Correspondent in Los Angeles, United States of America.  He was with BBC until 1994 when he moved over to the Hausa Service of Voice of America (VOA) as an international broadcaster in the Hausa Service. The time spent working for VOA accorded him greater experience in Information Technology and media convergence. There, he gained experience in the use of Dalet Professional Recording Software. He used that opportunity to acquire skills in Information Technology and media convergence.

Resting only for a few months, in 1993 the late Usman resumed at the University of La Verne, California, where in 1995 he graduated with a Master of Arts degree in Communications.

With a first degree in broadcasting and Cinema, a second degree in Communications, two years later, he decided to explore other areas of study by attending the Strayer University, Washington DC where he enrolled in 1997 and graduated in 2001 with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Networking Engineering.

While engaged in various jobs in the USA, Mohammed Usman was also in touch with Nigeria as he contributed in facilitating development of Information Technology in some institutions like the Federal University of Technology, Yola, Sokoto State Polytechnic, and Sokoto State College of Education, where in 2007, he set up Local Area Networks for the two institutions of higher learning.

In 2007, the late Usman returned fully to Nigeria and was appointed the pioneer Director Information Technology in Voice of Nigeria and later appointed as the Executive Director, IT wef August 2014.

He retired from service wef 1st June 2015 at the age of 55.

Until his death, Usman was happily married with children and was a member of the Council of Registered Engineers of Nigeria.

Source: Voice of Nigeria