THE TSAM (CHAWAI) CHIEFDOM
BRIEF HISTORY OF THE TSAM (CHAWAI) CHIEFDOM
The Tsam chiefdom is in Kauru Local Government of Kaduna State. it is located in the South- Eastern part of the Local Government with a population of over eighty thousand (80,000) people as of 2007 census result. The chiefdom has a total land area of 1,125 sq kilometers.
The chiefdom is bond in the South by Moroa and Ganawuri Chiefdoms, to the East by Iregwe and Rukuba Chiefdoms all of Bassa Local Government of Plateau State to the North by Lere, Piriga and Kumana Chiefdoms and to the West by AtyapChiefdom.
Apart from the Atsam (Chawai) other tribes that occupy the land are Ribang, Pitti, Atyap, Moroa, Ikulu, Fulani, Rumada, Iregwe, Hausa, Kurama, Kachechere, Amawa and a handful of Igbos. All these tribes having being leaving peacefully in Chawai land.
Tsam Chiefdom has been in existence for over 600 years with its already establish tradition and norms of rulership. It was initially an independent kingdom where the chiefs have a status of SARKIN YANKA. Then the status of the Kingdom dimmed and became a vassal state under Zazzau but with considerable independence in appointing its chief according to Chawai tradition. A lot of anthropologist and historians like C.K Meek in his book, Tribes of Zaria province 1920, H.D Gun 950 and John Nengel have Confirm that the Atsam popularly known as Chawai people settled into their present location with an organized independent Traditional Local Administration before Circa 1350 A.D.
THE COLONIAL OCCUPATION
The Atsam were brought under the British Control in 1907 prior to this, during the period of 1902-1905 the British forces had to demonstrate the effectiveness of their superior modern weapons in the conquest and subjugation of politics which were well known for their military prowess such as the Amo, Afizere, Iregwe and Rukubu. They attempted to put up resistance in the defense of their politics ensconced on readily defenses hill top settlements on the Jos Plateau. Before attacking the Atsam, the politics on Kauru and Surubu Massif had similarly been conquered and subdued in 1907.
News of the great loss of life and property which accompanied the defeat of these very close neighbors’ no doubt serves as a warning on the futility of attempting to offer armed resistance against the invading colonial forces. This may account for the absence of open confrontation between the Atsam and the British force. With the coming of Colonial Administration, provinces were created and the vassal states around Zaria that Chawai, Kauru and Kajuru were made District. However, they retained their semi-independence of appointing their Chief from the locality with the title of SARKIN CHAWAI or SARKIN KAURU as the case may be.
Out of the economic imperative the administrative decisions were taken which led to the dissolution of Atsam, it was merge with Zangon Kataf until long after independence in 1975 when it regain its previous status. Tsam chiefdom was created in 2001 by his Excellency, the Executive Governor of Kaduna State Alh. (Dr.) Ahamed Mohammed Makarfi (SARKIN YAKIN CHAWAI). The traditional title of the chiefdom is TSAM CHIEFDOM with headquarters at DAMAKASUWA. The Tsam traditional system has only two (2) ruling house known as KINGWARI (KARGI) and KIRAGITO (KUKA). The selection of Chief in Tsam Chiefdom is base on merit. Tsam Chiefdom has three (3) kingmakers, namely:
1. ZAMBINA (Chairman Kingmakers)
2. MAIZANKO (Member)
3. MADAKI (Member)
NAMES OF PAST RULERS ARE AS FOLLOWS:
1st Mohammed Jatau Kingwari (Kargi)
2nd Mohammed Babari Kingwari (Kargi)
3rd Yunusa Maikahon Gada Karigato (Kuka)
4th Bako Yunusa Kiragato (Kuka)
5th Ningardi Babari Kingwari (Kargi)
6th Isa Babari Kingwari (Kargi)
7th Ahmadu Umaru Kingwari (Kargi)
8th Gwaza Isa Kingwari (Kargi)
9th Abdulmumini Ahmadu Kingwari (Kargi)
10th Mohammed Gani Bako Kiragato (Kuka)
11th Mohammed Sani Ahmadu Kingwari (Kargi)
12th Umaru Bako Kiragato (Kuka)
13th Abdujikan Bako Kiragato (Kuka)
14th Abubakar Damai Ahmadu Kingwari (Kargi)
The present chief is Alh. Danlami Yahaya (Res-Tsam) he was appointed District head I 1975 and elevated to a 3rd class Chief on 19th January 2001. There are eight (8) district Tsam Chiefdom