Mansur Muhammad Dan-Ali was born on August 25, 1959 at Birnin-Magaji in Zamfara State to the late Alhaji Mohammed Mode Dan-Ali’s family, who was the first emir of Birnin-Majaji Emirate. He obtains basic training in Arabic Alphabet and recitation of the Holy Qu’ran. He acquired both Islamic and Western education, where he secured admission into Government Secondary School, Shinkafi, from (1972-1977), he proceeded and obtained  Higher National Diploma (HND) in Photogrammetric and survey Engineering school (GIS) from Kaduna Polytechnic (1977-1982) as well as Masters’ Degrees in Public Policy and Administration (MPPA) from Bayero University, Kano (2004-2005). He had also   Secured Masters Degree in Security Studies, from the Bangladesh University of Professionals, in 2009.

He enrolled in Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna after his NYSC, and got commissioned as a lieutenant in December 1984. He later attended several courses on his own personal capacity and officially by military authority at both home and abroad. Dan-Ali has served in different capacity in both command and staff which are: Captain 311 artillery Regiment Epe. He served as Battery Captain. Adjutant and Battery Commander from 1985-1988. He was also Company Commander / Instructor at Short Service Wing at NDA 1994-1996, as a Lt Col, he was General Staff Officer Training at Headquarters Nigerian Army Corps of Artillery (HQ NACA). He was also General Staff Officer Examination between 1998 and 2000 at Army HQs and later Garrison Commander at 32 Artillery Brigade, Abeokuta.  

The General was also at AFCSC as Directing Staff (DS) from 2003 -2005 and Colonel Courses at Army HQs, Abuja between 2005-2006. Commander 301 Artillery Regiment (General Support) at Gombe from 2006-2008. Prior to attending National Defence College Bangladesh, he served as the Commander Nigerian Battalion at United Nations- Africa Hybrid Mission in Sudan (UNAMID). 

He was posted back to NDA as Chief Instructor (CI) after completing his NDC Course in 2010. He became Acting Director Military Training (DMT) before his posting to Department of Logistics at Defence HQ as Deputy Director. He wa also the pioneer Commander of the newly established 32 Artillery Brigade, Akure from 2012-2013, and later retired from Nigerian Military Service on August 30, 2013. 

He was decorated with the following Medals: Forces Meritorious and Distinguished Service Stars, Pass Staff Course (Dagger) Command and Field Command Medals. Others include Silver and Golden Jubilee medals, member National Defence College Bangladesh, Harmony and UNAMID Medals. He is a staunch member of the Nigerian Armed Forces Polo Association where he represented the Nigerian Military at USA and India at International Polo Tournaments. Also to his credit is a school called El-Eman Nursery/ Primary School he personally built and donated to his community. A man retired but never tired; Dan-Ali was nominated as a delegate to the National Conference based on his meritorious service to the nation.

He attended various workshops, conferences and presented many papers on contemporary security issues both at home and abroad. He is currently the YARIMAN BIRNIN MAGAJI. He is a polite and straight forward person and well informed on contemporary security issues. The senior officer has visited several countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, America and Middle East. His hobbies include horse riding (polo), jogging and travelling. 

He married with children. And he is now the Minister for Defence of Federal Republic of Nigeria.