He graduated from Ahmadu Bello University in 1985 with a degree in Accounting. He obtained a Master of Science degree in Economics from the University of Lagos in 1992 and a PhD in Accounting from Igbinedion University.
He began his career with Coopers & Lybrand in 1985, and worked at the Central Bank of Nigeria from 1988 to 1999.
He was appointed Accountant General of Gombe State, holding this position until 2005.
He was appointed Accountant – General of the Federation on 20 April 2005. He held this office until he resigned to start his campaign for election as Governor of Gombe State January 2011.
He was elected Governor of Gombe State in the 26 April 2011 elections, running on the People's Democratic Party (PDP) platform. And was sworn in on 29 May 2011.
He lost his deputy Mr. David Miyims Albashi, who died on 4 November 2011 in a German hospital of injuries he sustained in a car crash on August 28. On the 17 December 2011 he appointed Mr. Tha'anda Rubainu as current Deputy Governor.
In the 2015 Governorship elections he was again re-elected as the Governor under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party.(PDP).