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Kano Emirs’ Appointment: All Eyes on the Court

Two days after Abdullahi Ganduje, governor of Kano State presented the staff of office to four new first class emirs he recently appointed, a Kano State High Court sitting in Ungogo Local Govt Area has reversed the appointment and the installation of the emirs.

Justice Nasiru Saminu, the Presiding Judge, ordered a return to status quo pending the determination of the suit against the appointment of the Emirs. Governor Ganduje appointed for new first-class emirs last week and gave them staff of office last Monday following the signing into law of the Kano State Emirs’ Appointment and Deposition Amendment Bill 2019, which created four additional emirates in the state – Gaya, Rano, Karaye, and Bichi.

But the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, state assembly lawmakers led by Rabiu Gwarzo, had challenged the hasty manner the bill was passed and signed into law, claiming it breached due process and asked the court to declare it null and void.

An interim injunction granted by the court on Friday, May 10 restraining the governor from appointing new emirs was ignored, with Governor Ganduje claiming he was not served any court injunction.

Last Wednesday the court gave another ruling asking the state government to revert to status quo on the issue of the emirs’ appointment pending the determination of the case before the court.

But on the same day the court intervened, one of the new emirs advised those against their appointment to see the development as the will of God and accept it. Aminu Ado Bayero, who was widely touted as the successor to the Kano throne after the death of his father, the immediate past Emir of Kano, Ado Bayero, said God orders all things and the changes must be accepted.

Bayero, who addressed a press conference on why he did not reject his appointment as emir of Bichi, said “Change is permanent in life, even though it is not my wish to see Kano emirate been fragmented to five, but it is the will of God, and no one has the power to change it”.

He said he had no personal animosity towards the man who succeeded his late father, stressing that they both have mutual respect. He also revealed that he did not lobby to be appointed emir and he viewed the appointment as part of the changes that come with time.

“Again, from the time my late dad became emir to the time he died, he saw a lot of changes and he accepted them in good faith. Historically, the police, prisons, customs, judges, and schools were initially under Emirates, but as time went by, they separated, and our forefathers had to accept the changes,

“So, the creation of new Emirates to me is nothing but changes that always come from time to time. For me, having five emirs in Kano will affect its development if the emirs can work together in peace and harmony. If the emirs have a concern about the development of Kano, they can work together and move the state forward. There is no difference between all of us,” he said.

However, four Kingmakers that have the traditional legal powers to appoint new Emirs, have also challenged the action of Governor Ganduje at the court and are asking for the nullification of the appointment.

The four kingmakers are Madakin Kano, District head of Dawakin Tofa, Yusuf Nabahani; Makaman Kano, District Head of Wudil, Abdullahi Sarki-Ibrahim; Sarkin Dawaki Mai Tuta, District Head of Gabasawa, Bello Abubakar and Sarkin Ban Kano, District Head of Dambatta.

But those who instituted the court action have been advised not to jubilate yet. Ibrahim Mukhtar, the Attorney General of the state, in a statement explained the import of last Wednesday ruling.

According to Mukhtar, the court only said the status quo should be maintained pending the determination of the substantive suit in the matter. “Court had never in any way said what happens was a nullity and one should understand that witnesses must testify in the case before any action should be taking (sic ) by the court.”He said what the Court did was to ask the government to present before it all their evidence before the adjourned date of ‪May 21, 2019‬. 

“The Court had not in the first place heard even one single witness, what happened is nothing but mischief and totally an action aimed at causing misinformation on the creation of the new emirate,” he insisted.

All eyes now on the court.

Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi Photo
Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi

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