PROTESTS AS SANUSI EMERGES EMIR OF KANO •HOW HE BECAME EMIR

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PROTESTS, on Sunday, greeted the announcement of the former governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Lamido Sanusi, as the Emir of Kano.
The state governor, Dr Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, on Sunday, announced the former CBN governor, as the new emir, to succeed the late emir, Alhaji (Dr) Ado Bayero, who died on Friday last week
Sanusi was named the new emir by Governor Kwankwaso amid a lot of intrigues and suspicions.
About two years ago, the former CBN governor was alleged to have boasted that the only position in life he was waiting to occupy was that of the emir.
He was declared as the emir at a short press briefing addressed by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Rabiu Bichi, at the Government House, Kano.
Tension enveloped the city shortly after the declaration by the government.
What allegedly angered some of the people was that in the early hours of the day, it was allegedly announced secretly that Lamido Ado Bayero, the eldest son of the late Dr Bayero had been appointed as the new emir.
However, tempers rose immediately it was learnt that the former governor of CBN had been appointed as the new emir.
Pandemonium broke out with people making bonfires, as residents ran for dear lives,while shop owners locked up their shops and returned to their houses.
How he emerged
A last-minute deal that delivered the emirship of Kano to Sanusi was reportedly sealed a few hours to the announcement of his name as emir-elect of the ancient city.
Sanusi had himself announced the first son of the late emir, Lamido Ado Bayero, as the emir-elect on his Twitter handle, only for the state government to deny the reported appointment.
Nigerian Tribune gathered that Sunusi was the unanimous choice of the kingmakers who had communicated same to Governor Kwankwaso who was said to have come under intense pressure from those against Sanusi and those pushing for his installation.
By the morning of Saturday, it was learnt that the governor had been sufficiently convinced that Sanusi would be a mistake for him and he had reportedly accepted Bayero’s first son, despite the sustained tiff between the governor and the late Bayero.
A respected first class traditional ruler in the North, a former president and two sitting governors in the North-West reportedly led the opposition to Sanusi’s emergence.
A Government House source told the Nigerian Tribune that Kwankwaso was told that Sanusi would be a loose canon that the government institution in the state would not be able to handle.
Even his activist-friends, who were expected to weigh-in for him, also reportedly took the same stance that his personality would not collocate with the demands of the throne.
By Sunday morning, all major stakeholders in the state had reportedly settled on Lamido Ado Bayero, which reportedly led to his settling down at the palace to receive visitors, who were all waiting for the official announcement.
Sanusi also wrote on his Twitter handle about the frenzy going on in the ancient city about the anticipated announcement of Bayero’s son as his father’s successor.
By mid-day, events reportedly moved in rapid succession, starting with the Kano State government denying Lamido Ado Bayero’s appointment and asking everyone to wait for the official announcement.
Nigerian Tribune learnt that Kwankwaso came under intense pressure from his political platform, the All Progressives Congress (APC), on behalf of Sanusi.
A chieftain of the party from the North, who confirmed the involvement of the party’s top echelon, disclosed that though the governor was convinced by the argument against Sanusi’s appointment by a respected traditional ruler and a former president, consideration for his political future and the opportunity to deepen anti-President Goodluck Jonathan’s sentiments in the most-populous state swayed him in embracing Sanusi at the last minute.
The political forces, which eventually enthroned Lamido Sanusi, reportedly argued that Kwankwaso needed to deepen his presidential project chances by making sure that Jonathan would be unable to make any in-roads into the state in 2015.
Nigerian Tribune further learnt that they reasoned that if another liberal emir like Bayero got in, it could be a lee-way for Jonathan and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to penetrate the state, with Lamido Ado Bayero being projected as a chip-off-the-block who would possibly continue in his father’s liberal mindedness.
It was also reportedly pointed out to the governor that Lamido Ado Bayero could still be nursing grudges against him over the sustained tiff with the late emir, while the Ado Bayeros were also said to have been projected to the governor as sympathisers of former Governor Ibrahim Shekarau, who Jonathan just nominated a minister and expected to be his main man in 2015 presidential election in the state.
Kwankwaso reportedly keyed-in into the Lamido Sanusi project when he was told that Sanusi’s emirship would seal the state completely for him and the party, since both the government and traditional institutions in the state would be unwelcoming of Jonathan.
A senior member of the party in Abuja told the Nigerian Tribune that with Sanusi’s appointment, APC had completely locked down the two most populous states in the country; Kano and Lagos, adding that the main traditional institutions in both states, which could give Jonathan a semblance of hospitality during campaigns, were occupied by those with issues against him.
Kwankwaso, now considered a front-runner in the contest for the presidential ticket of APC, due to the reported support by majority of governors on the platform of the party, was said to have been convinced by Sunday afternoon that he had more to gain by appointing Sanusi, despite the misgivings of certain senior citizens he respected.
One of the said senior citizens was reportedly miffed by the governor’s volte-face after he had assured those against Sanusi that the former CBN boss would not get the title, but a close associate said the senior citizen would not discuss the issue with the governor again.
It could not be confirmed if the governor reached out to the former president and the first class traditional ruler before succumbing to pressure from his party leadership and Sanusi’s close allies, especially a former governor and a former minister.
A deal that Sanusi would be loyal to the governor and not overreach him had also been reportedly sealed.
A prominent possible challenger to Kwankwaso for the party’s presidential ticket was said not to be a part of the pro-Sanusi lobbying group.
When a leader of the party privy to the lobbying was contacted, he confirmed it and asked rhetorically: “Is Sanusi not from Kano? Is he not a prince? Was his grandfather not an emir? What is wrong in giving a friend a little push? Were we wrong to be there for a friend?”
When contacted, party spokesperson, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said the party would comment officially on Sanusi’s emergence today.
Fashola, Amosun congratulate him
Lagos State governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, congratulated the new emir-elect, Sanusi, on his emergence.
The governor, in a statement made available to newsmen, wished the former CBN governor long and fruitful reign as the 14th emir of the ancient city.
According to him, the emergence would further cement the long standing bond between the people of Kano and their brothers and sisters in Lagos and across the country with whom they had been living in peace.
Fashola noted that the emergence was a deserving feat for the former CBN helmsman, who had endeared himself to the Nigerian public for his brilliance, courage, professionalism and tact, saying his tenure as CBN boss was very eventful and quite useful to moving the country forward.
Praying that the reign of the new emir would bring lasting peace and progress to the country, the governor wished him long life and congratulated the people, governor and the government of Kano and Nigerians generally for making the right choice.
Also, the Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, congratulated the new emir.
Amosun lauded the choice of the foremost banker and erstwhile governor of CBN, who, he said, would bring his wealth of experience to bear in the appointment.
In a press release signed by his Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mrs Olufunmilayo Wakama, Amosun urged the emir-elect to follow in the footsteps of the predecessor by bringing further development to the emirate and the state as a whole.
“As an accomplished technocrat, I believe the new emir will use his influence to foster peace and attract more development to the emirate and, indeed, the state,” the governor said.
Kwara State governor, Dr Abdulfatah Ahmed, congratulated the new emir on the ascension of the throne of his forefathers.
Governor Ahmed, in a congratulatory message on Sunday, said the emergence of Sanusi was a positive development for the traditional institution in Nigeria.
Governor Ahmed was optimistic that the new emir would bring his wealth of experience to bear in sustaining the eminence of Kano in commerce and other sectors in Nigeria and West Africa.
The Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Alhaji Abdul-Azeez Arisekola-Alao, also congratulated Alhaji Sanusi on his appointment.
He described the appointment as “the wish of the Almighty Allah, who gives power to whom He pleases.”
Alhaji Arisekola prayed “the Almighty God to guide, protect and always lead Alhaji Sanusi in all his undertakings.”
Source: Tribune

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