Patience appears to be running out among some stakeholders in Kano State over the state governor’s handling of Kano Emirate. A statement on the issue Sunday by a much younger set of voices under the name Advocates for United Kano is arguing for immediate repeal of what it calls the obnoxious law creating new emirates out of Kano Emirate, basing its resolution on “careful consideration of the fact that the personal ambitions of the governor should not be allowed to jeopardise the overall common good and harmonious relationship existing among the Kano populace”
Among the ten signatories are Alhaji Bashir Othman Tofa; Rt. Hon. Ghali Umar Na’Abba Alhaji Abba Dabo, Prof. Jibrin Ibrahim, Dr. Bala Mohammed; Malam Ibrahim Ado Kurawa. Others are Dr. Dalhatu Sani Yola, Alhaji Bashir Yusif Ibrahim, Engr. Lawan Audi and Prof Farouk Sarkin Fada.
The only safe landing the group is offering the governor is subjecting the law in its entirety to the processes of popular will if, in the wisdom of the governor, the new emirates are necessary in order to fast track development among the citizens. In fact, the collective is all for subjecting the law to a referendum so that the voice of the people of Kano State could be heard and respected.
Titled “Citizens of Kano State are Against Attempts at Destroying their 1000 Year Old Heritage”, the signatories are further convinced Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje is putting “the most influential emirate in the Sokoto Caliphate” at risk irrespective of the views of citizens cutting across various spheres of endeavors within and beyond the state. Locating the governor’s impulse in political impunity and vendetta which they believe to have beclouded his reasoning and judgement, the collective says the singular act of rupturing Kano Emirate is appalling, misguided and dictatorial.
Made up of wealthy politicians, frontline journalists, tested technocrats and established intellectuals, this collective and the language of this particular press statement may have drawn the battle line more firmly in the tension over the splitting of Kano Emirate by the Kano State Government. Splitting Kano Emirate has been a regular menu of politics in the state since independence. This time, the force of personality of the incumbent Emir and his very vocal stance on key issues might have defined the controversy around it.
Unlike in the past when the legitimacy of governments was far stronger than today, it could be done against muffled voices. Governments across the country today are much weaker and too far from the citizenry they are almost always successfully checkmated on major issues or policy flanks. This particular case is much more complicated because monarch in no less than three key states spread across the Northwest and North Central can see the same fate befalling them should Muhammadu Sanusi 11, the Emir of Kano be degraded or even successfully removed by a governor.
Instructively, the Advocates for United Kano are imploring other well-meaning Nigerians not to relent in their prayers just as it is appealing to people in the state to be law abiding, saying it is into other interventions towards finding a lasting solution to what it calls ‘this unfortunate aspect of our history’.