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Sanusi returns as Emir of Kano

Four years after his dethronement, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II has been reappointed as the Emir of Kano.

Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf of Kano State announced the appointment of Sanusi as the new sole Emir of Kano.

He made the announcement after signing the new Emirate Council Law at the Government House, Kano, on Thursday.

The governor signed the law at exactly 5:10 p.m. in the company of his deputy, Comrade Aminu Abdussalam Gwarzo, the Speaker of the State Assembly, Rt. Hon. Jibril Isma’il Falgore, and other principal officials of the government.

Recall that Sanusi, a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), who was first appointed as Emir of Kano in 2014, was dethroned and deposed by former Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje after a much-publicised rift.

Before his dethronement, then-governor Ganduje had divided the Kano Emirate into five, creating and appointing first-class emirs for Bichi, Rano, Karaye, and Gaya emirates after amending the Emirates Council Law. But months later, Sanusi was dethroned, with the government accusing him of insubordination.

Sanusi’s supporters had, however, insisted that the emir was removed for allegedly supporting Governor Yusuf, then a governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in the 2019 election against Ganduje, who was seeking his second term in office.


How reinstatement proceeding played out

Governor Yusuf had during his 2023 governorship campaign vowed to void some of the decisions of his predecessor, including the creation of the four new emirates and the dethronement of Sanusi.

After Yusuf’s electoral victory, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, his political godfather and leader of the Kwankwasiyya Movement had revealed that the governor would not renege on his promise to review the creation of the four new emirates and the dethronement of Sanusi.

As such, following a petition by a group to the state House of Assembly calling for the reinstatement of Sanusi, the House on Tuesday, May 22, resolved to review the law that was used by Ganduje to oust the reinstated emir.

Following the first reading of the amendment bill on Wednesday, the bill scaled second and third readings on Thursday, and was passed as the Kano Emirates Council Law (Repeal Bill) 2024.

A few hours later, the governor assented to it and declared that it took effect immediately.

The law abrogated the establishment of five new emirates in the state and set aside all offices established under the repealed law.

Also, all district heads elevated or appointed under the repealed law are to revert to their previous positions.


How gov announced Emir Sanusi’s return

Speaking immediately after signing the law, Governor Yusuf said, “Everyone should go about his or her normal activities in the state; we have done what we believe is in the best interest of the state and its people.

“I want to inform the good people of Kano that today we reappointed Sanusi Lamido Aminu Sanusi, popularly known as Muhammadu Sanusi II, as the 16th Emir of Kano, while the five former emirs are expected to vacate their palaces within 48 hours.”

The five emirs affected by the development are the 15th Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero; the Emir of Bichi, Alhaji Nasir Ado Bayero; the Emir of Rano, Alhaji Kabiru Muhammad Inuwa; the Emir of Karaye, Alhaji Ibrahim Abubakar II; and the Emir of Gaya, Alhaji Aliyu Ibrahim Abdulkadir.

While signing the bill into law, the governor expressed satisfaction that the new law will bring unity among the people of Kano and foster sustainable socio-economic development.

Governor Yusuf further said that the return of Muhammadu Sanusi II to the throne will propel peace and prosperity, adding that the repeal of the council law was in realisation of his campaign commitments to restore the lost glory of the state and its rich cultural heritage.

He emphasised that the signing of the bill symbolises the restoration of the revered legacy of the Kano Emirate, which has withstood the test of time for over a thousand years.

The governor urged the populace in the state to continue supporting his administration in delivering a multitude of infrastructural advancements that will propel Kano to greater heights.

Under the new Kano Emirate Repeal Law 2024, Kano State is now under one emirate.


Deposed Kano, Bichi emirs out of town

Meanwhile, Daily Trust gathered that Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, who earlier succeeded Sanusi, was out of town when the new development occurred. He had paid a courtesy call on Oba Sikiru Adetona, the Awujale of Ijebuland, on Wednesday.

His whereabouts was unknown as at press time yesterday.

His younger brother, Alhaji Nasiru Ado Bayero, who has also been removed as Emir of Bichi, was also said to be out of Kano State. The whereabouts of the now-deposed emirs of Rano, Karaye, and Gaya could not also be established at the time of filing this report.

Daily Trust reports that the reinstated emir will go to Kano today from Lagos.

“He left Port Harcourt yesterday and will proceed to his domain tomorrow. All arrangements have been completed to receive him at the Malam Aminu Kano International Airport,” a source said.

“From there, the emir will proceed straight to the government house to meet with the governor and other top government officials.

“After the meeting, he will be taken to the emir’s palace where he will meet with title holders and fully resume his role as the sole monarch of Kano,” the source said.

Meanwhile, the Sarkin Dawaki Babba of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Babba Dan Agundi, has approached the Federal High Court, Kano Judicial Division.

In the court papers seen by one of our correspondents last night, Dan Agundi asked the court to stop all the changes carried out by the Kano Assembly.


Arbitrary dethronement bad omen for traditional institution – NEF

Meanwhile, the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has expressed concerns over the recent dethronement of traditional rulers in Kano and the reinstatement of Muhammad Sanusi II as the sole Emir of Kano.

In a statement by Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, its Director of Publicity and Advocacy, the Forum noted that Kano is a clear example of a power struggle that has led to the creation of multiple emirates, thereby diluting the authority and influence of traditional rulers in the region.

“Furthermore, the arbitrary dethronement and replacement of high-ranking traditional rulers in Kano not only weaken the authority and legitimacy of traditional rulers but also send a message that their role and relevance in society are easily dispensable.

“This move is not only threatening the unity and cohesion of the traditional structure but also undermining the centuries-old customs, values, and traditions that have been the bedrock of Nigerian society. The perpetuation of these challenges is a reflection of the wider issue of the emasculation of traditional rulers in Nigeria,” NEF said.

On the way forward, the Forum said, “It is imperative that traditional rulers be re-empowered and given the recognition and support they deserve, which can only be achieved through a concerted effort to restore the statutory recognition of traditional rulers in the country and provide them with the necessary resources and authority to fulfil their duties effectively.”