Shareefah Ibrahim Zarma, who is popularly known as Sheefah Zarma, is a North-eastern Nigerian poetess, a spoken word artist, and an activist for women empowerment and liberation. She is a motivational speaker who authored two books entitled ‘The Silent Noise & Other Poems’ and ‘Black Rose’.
Shareefah Zarma has sold thousands of copies of the books both nationally and internationally. She has performed in high-profile government and non-government summits and conferences all over Nigeria and Europe.
She recently opened an advocacy platform named National Unity Advocates.
A serial entrepreneur, Sheefah is the CEO of Snap Back With Sheefah, which is an online weight-loss coaching platform; CEO, Bricks & Brains Homes Ltd , a property development and interior decoration company; CEO, Chique by Sheefah, which is a fashion line producing contemporary female ready-to-wear outfits alongside a bespoke Moroccan and Senegalese men’s outfits; CEO, Sheefah Zarma Production, which is an audio/visual recording company in relation to poetry, music, moderating, anchoring and all other types of creative media works.
Some of the events she has anchored include:
* Kaduna State Investment Summit 3.0 & 4.0
* Kaduna State Investment Gala Night 3.0
* Green Heart Foundation Gala Night.
* Maiduguri Entrepreneurship Hub
* Breast Cancer Awareness/ South Africa.
* She leads Africa, etc.
A show she organised, “Evening with Sheefah Zarma”, which was held at Shifu Restaurant on June 29, 2019 attracted professionals and other participants from all over the world.
Can you tell us a bit about your peaceful advocacy movement and your N.U.A forum of Nigeria?
Sure, the National Unity Advocates Forum is a non-governmental platform, with its mandate to advocate for one Nigeria, where all Nigerians will come together in unity and harmony irrespective of tribe, religion and age, to strive for a better country.
This platform will be enlightening in the sense that we will try to re-sensitise the notion of our unity, the importance of love for one another, the importance of sneering at promoting selfish interests, as well as the fulfilment that comes with the honour of respecting one another, irrespective of tribe, gender, religion or age.
Our main aim is to promote love, peace and unity amongst the citizens of our beloved country, Nigeria. So, the time is now, my dear brothers and sisters, to change the narrative, to create awareness, to avoid being a victim of their coercion, to educate the naive, to protect the vulnerable and easily exploited.
So, for all and any patriotic lover of his/her country, the time is now for us to unite. We are not the problem, we are peaceful people, we are responsible people, we are compassionate and empathetic people, who want to live in peace, love and harmony with every tribe and religion of this great country, because Nigeria is one, and it equally belongs to us all; that is why we must promote equity and equality in all ramifications of life.
Who are your role models?
My role models are our beloved prophets and messengers of God who sacrificed their lives and years advocating in their community because they loved their people; that kind of selflessness is one worthy of emulation.
And my beloved parents with whom I’m well pleased with and grateful for their priceless teachings, that in life being an altruistic person is better than being a wealthy person. It added a lot to why I am who I am today.
Then, many other renowned men and women who made history striving for different humane purposes for their people and their country, and these icons include the likes of Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, Martin Luther King Jr, Mahatma Gandhi, Malala Yousafzai, Wole Soyinka, Ken Saro-Wiwa, Gani Fawehinmi, Chinua Achebe, Maya Angelou, Lee Kuan Yew, Kwame Nkrumah, Patrick Henry, John. F. Kennedy, Franklin. D. Roosevelt, Queen Amina of Zazzau, Patrick Loch Otieno Lumumba, and many others.
In conclusion, what I want to say is, if these great humans can stand up for their people and country, why can’t we stand up for the voiceless, for the naive and easily manipulated.
That is why I have taken it upon myself, to advocate for the sake of God, because we deserve better from our leaders, we deserve better from this great blessed nation, that is rich in oil, soil and many other mineral resources.
Notwithstanding; we must go back and do our research on who to vote come 2023 elections, we must listen carefully to all these candidates, to what they are telling us, what they are promising us, what they are saying they will and can deliver, the time is now to choose our leaders wisely! Based on their competence and nothing more.
How would you describe a Nigeria of your dreams?
I will describe the Nigeria of my dreams as a country where every citizen can sleep with both eyes closed, a country where our leaders are elected based on competence, not minding where they come from, whether north, south, east or west, whether a Muslim or a Christian, in as much as that candidate is a Nigerian. That is all that should matter. I want a Nigeria with constant power supply, with clean water, with a better health care system, with a stable and better educational system, with a better pay for both civil and public servants. I simply want a nation that practises equity and equality in all aspects of life, from the moral, the religious, social and political aspects, irrespective of tribe, age, gender or religion.
I want a Nigeria where the whole system will be re-sensitised and reformed. I want a working country which implements laws on zero tolerance towards corruption, racketeering and any form of misconduct. I want a country where we’ll implement a death penalty for law breakers, outlaws, power abusers, the looters, embezzlers and kleptomaniacs, irrespective of the office they hold or held.
The law is the law; we can emulate Asia’s disciplinary laws, when we do that, everyone will act accordingly or resign; everyone will simply lead with caution.
So, enough with the abuse of power; enough with the mismanagement of resources; enough with looting; enough with silencing the weak; enough with electing incompetent, myopic, self-conceited, egocentric, avaricious and greedy leaders – because this is our future and the future of the next generation to come.
No one should be allowed to do as they like with it anymore, because we are talking about the lives of 217,569,662 lives and counting, as of September 29th, 2022.
That is why this is a serious cause; we have to join hands, and our voices. We have no machetes, no guns or knives but we have the power of our voices, and when we are united, it will strike louder than the thunder, more powerful than the tsunami, and we will comfortably and happily say that we did it! That we strived for a new Nigeria, the Nigeria of our dreams.
May God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria
(Chairperson: National Unity Advocates)
IG: @sheefarh @national_unity_advocates
Facebook: Sheefah Zarma Page
Email: [email protected]