Sheikh Uthman Dan Fodio

Sheikh Uthman Dan Fodio was the most influential Islamic scholar in West Africa. He was a Mujahid and reformer. Born at Maratta in Gobir in 1754, he studied Qur’an, Fiqh, Arabic, Tafsir, Hadith, Maths and Astronomy. By 20 he finished his studies.
In the 18th century Muslim scholars in west Africa began an Islamic revolution. The most prominent was Uthman. By 1808 the Hausa states were conquered. The new state was the Sokoto Khilafat, a vast empire run by emirs in accordance with Islamic law. The emirates recognized the authority of Ameerul Mu’mineen, Sultan Uthman. Uthman died in 1817 and was succeeded by his son Muhammad Bello.
His jihad created the largest empire in Africa since Muslim Songhai in 1591. It stretched 1,500 kilometers from Burkina Faso to Cameroon, a major part of central and west Africa. The jihad provided inspiration for Jihads that led to Islamic states in Senegal, Mali, Ivory Coast, Chad, Central African Republic, and Sudan. It was like the French Revolution in terms of widespread impact. The French Revolution affected European history, the Sokoto Jihad affected history in Africa from Senegal to the Red Sea.
Sheikh Uthman was worried about the violation of Islamic Law and neglect of the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam)'s Sunnah and devoted his effort to teaching and writing Islam. He wrote over 50 books.