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Tomiwa Ilori: Sanusi Lamido as Emir – A dream or a nightmare


Tomiwa Ilori: Sanusi Lamido as Emir – A dream or a nightmare

By Tomiwa Ilori

Politics is everywhere. Especially in Nigeria, it has become a tool, however vicious. The viciousness of politics however is always determined by those on the receiving end. Anyone who benefits from the results of a political action will have little to comment on its viciousness which will not be a sweet truth for the vanquished to swallow.

Several months ago, the Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido, was suspended from office by the President on the allegation of financial misconduct and other far reaching irregularities. The politics involved in his suspension was adjudged by many to be more than the administrative uprightness that is supposed to be sought. There was crossfire of allegation both by the Federal Government and the Sanusi Lamido apologists both on the point of law and morals. While there are nagging issues as to the actual role of the likes of Bukola Saraki in the emergence of Sanusi Lamido as the Central Bank Governor against the second term nomination of his predecessor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo and the allegations against the activities of the Governor in his official capacities in the recent reform policies of the financial sector, Sanusi Lamido might not be entirely free of the allegations he is levelling against the government.

Whatever the interests of Sanusi Lamido seeking to lay bare the butt of a government he works for is unknown but what is of necessary fact is the actual importance of the issues he had raised. These issues ranged from the budgetary allocation of the legislature and the missing NNPC funds amongst others.

It is quite important to note at this juncture, that there is no easier way to make a formidable enemy than speaking against the government. Sanusi must have prepared to entertain all sorts of missiles in respect of the position of speaking against the government. While it is recognized that state power is next after God’s, that is why there is always the challenge of entrusting the leadership of state apparati to worthy individuals. When worthy individuals wield state power, there is a guarantee of objective use of authority and not to settle personal scores. Even though politics is an aggregate of masquerading interests, the utmost goal of those interests is supposed to be for public good.

The morality of Sanusi’s removal both in the formal court and public court of opinion is a subject that brings too much of sentiments to table. But the fact still remains that the Governor was suspended from office and a new Governor now occupies the office.

Upon the death of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero in the early hours of Friday, June 6, the race to one of the most respected ancestral stools in Nigeria has begun. Many are aware of the former CBN  Governor’s ambition to be the next Emir. Even though it is constitutionally recognized that it is the Governor of a state that has residual powers to deal with chieftaincy matters, there are several pointers in the direction of Sanusi Lamido facing a tough time in realizing his dream as the new Emir.

There has been allegation of the former CBN Governor courting the opposition party stalwarts like Nasir El-Rufai, Bukola Saraki and a host of others in the All Progressives Congress (APC). The current Kano Governor, Alhaji Rabiu Musa Kwankwanso is a staunch member of the opposition party which gives a good credit to the actualization of Sanusi’s dream in the Emirate. One of the cardinal decision makers in determining who becomes the next Emir, is the Governor.

Alhaji Ado Bayero, the late Emir was known to be a staunch supporter of President Goodluck Jonathan and there have been ample discussions as to the late Emir seeking his eldest son, Alhaji Sanusi Ado Bayero to become the Emir after him. Even though the Emirate council who are the actual Kingmakers and on whose decision the Governor must consolidate his choice may still be said to be divided, the influence of the Federal Government in whose good books Sanusi Lamido is conspicuously absent cannot be downplayed.

What this actually portends is the deployment of sophisticated power play in selecting who the next Emir of Kano would be. Sanusi Lamido might have his exposure and equal lineage footing with those in contention against him, but the overarching powers of the Federal Government will go deep in naming him the next Emir going by their relationship which is obviously sour.

The eldest son of the late Emir will automatically garner the support of the Federal Government and his father’s loyalist in realizing his ambition. What the climax of the whole scenario would be is the role of the Governor. Whoever emerges as the eventual choice by the Kingmakers has to be endorsed by the Governor. What is a steady fact is a possible clash if Sanusi is not chosen by the Kingmakers thereby causing a possible stall in the installation of a new Emir.

Weighing the outcome of these issues, it is no far cry to imagine the Federal Government seeking revenge for Sanusi’s whistle blowing activities while in office combined with elements who are not comfortable with Sanusi becoming the next Emir of Kano but it goes that Sanusi will also seek to deploy all available tactics to ensure that he is installed as the new Emir.

What will ensue in the following season is going to be a memorable show of political theatrics and power tussle. Parties will seek to draw blood from aching grievances that time and situations will not heal but which struggle for prominence will ascertain through the results of the battle. The emergence of Sanusi Lamido as the next Emir of Kano would be a situation of interest to history and a test and show of an evocative power play Nigeria has ever witnessed in recent times.

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