You ever hear some of the things perpetuated by Nigerian leaders and think: “Well, you must have been a fun head prefect to cross?”
A Nigerian leader currently re-kindling adolescent nightmares and topping 2019’s “Most Arbitrary Use of Power list” is no other than the-one-who’s-agbada-must-not be-shaken, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. Through truly interesting cartwheels of the powers vested in him by the Constitution, he might single-handedly be responsible for the watering down of the over 200 year-old caliphate currently headed by Emir Sanusi II due to a little thing commonly known beef.
What Caused This Beef?
Now, if you had to list three things about the 14th Emir of the Sokoto Caliphate, you’d probably mention three things.
- His preference for bow-ties.
(Or former preference before this became his casual wear)
2. His diction, which is sound enough to make any Primary school teacher proud, and
3. His affinity for telling the truth as he sees it.
Now, regarding this love for the truth. Check him out here ripping Goodluck Jonathan a new one over $20 billion that went missing from the government coffers. And here, giving a proper left to Buhari over his economic policies.
Hardly one to discriminate, the Emir also routinely let it be known that he was no fan of the Governor within whose state, his Caliphate rested. A move which we all now know is likely responsible for damaging ripple effects to the empire.
A most noteworthy cause of their friction, however, is this video released in 2017.
In it, the Emir had choice words for a Governor who went to China to collect loans of $1.5 billion for a light rail, whereas his state had a learning institution deficit, with 3-5 million students out of school, saying:
“At the end of the day, what do you benefit from it? Your citizen will ride on a train and when you ride on a train, in northern Nigeria, in a state like Kano or Katsina, where are you going to? You are not going to an industrial estate to work. You are not going to school? You are not going to the farm. You borrow money from China to invest in trains so that your citizens can ride on them and go for weddings and naming ceremonies.”
In what many perceived as a retaliation for his statement, a probe began on the Emirate Council’s finances, with interesting claims like a
₦ 37 million phone bill. This probe was however shut down through high-level interventions.
In 2019, at the peak of NextLevel campaigns, the Emir also let it be known, through thinly veiled comments, that the people should reject leaders who had only selfish interests at heart.
Ganduje was stewing in his Benjamins lined Babaringa.
The Events of May 8th, 2019.
On this day, history was made with just about the fastest law being passed in Nigeria, with the creation of 4 new Emirates. This creation was carried out on the recommendation of unknown persons to the House of Assembly to create 4 new emirates; with first class Emirs for Gaya, Rano, Karaye and Bichi .
The assembly, exhibiting a speed virtually unheard of, immediately constituted a committee, asking it to make a report by the very next day. By Wednesday afternoon, the Assembly had passed the amendments into the Emirs (Appoints and Deposition) Act, splitting the emirate into five. By which by evening, the Governor had signed the amendments into law.
Whatever reasons you might think lie in the creation of the additional emirates, the Governor wants you to know it has very little parts to play with having a vendetta, spelling it out clearly that the Local government Chairman, and not a whole governor deals with matters relating to the emirate.
Rather, his actions were merely vested in the best interest of the people, by granting them active participation in the traditional levels.
With a speed belying his 69 years, Ganduje also swore in
Aminu Ado Bayero of Bichi; Ibrahim Abdulkadir of Gaya; Tafida Abubakar of Rano; and Ibrahim Abubakar of Karaye, 2 days after the passage of the law, despite a court injunction restricting him from doing so.
How is Emir Sanusi Taking It?
Pretty Zen when you think about it. He recently returned from the United Kingdom to a heroes’ welcome by his supporters in Kano. He is yet to release a formal statement on the issue, but we’re in for a doozy when he does let it rip.