Nigeria: Protesters Condemn Ganduje Over Split of Kano Emirate, Sanusi's Probe

Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State

A group of protesters under the Kano First Forum have condemned the decision of Governor Abdullahi Ganduje and the State House of Assembly to split the Kano Emirate into five.

The protesters led by Yusuf Rabiu on Thursday called on the governor and lawmakers to immediately rescind the decision, which they described as a misplaced priority in the face of many pressing issues in the state.

The demonstrators waved placards with various inscriptions such as "More emirates are not needed," "Education, water, security and peace are our priority", "We say no to undemocratic laws" and "We say no to politicising emirship."

They marched along Gidan Murtala Road before they were dispersed by the police.

Addressing journalists, the leader of the group, Mr Rabiu, said Mr Ganduje should understand the difference between the Emir and Kano Emirate.

He said while the governor can institute action against the emir, he must not allow his decision to affect the emirate as an institution.

He said the creation of the new emirates will bring disunity and enmity among Kano people.

"The move will ruin our heritage that has survived for over two thousand years, as the grand emirate will lose prestige in the process. And finally, none of the emerging ones will fill the gap in this 21st Century."

He said the lawmakers should have focused on pressing issues like education, water supply, health, and the dying Kano businesses. He said over 3.5 million youth are jobless in Kano.

The group described the investigation of Kano Emirite finances by Kano State Public Complaint and Anti-corruption Commission as a witch hunt to tarnish the image of the emir.

The State House of Assembly had on Wednesday passed into law the bill for the creation of additional emirates in Rano, Karaye, Gaya and Bichi. Mr Ganduje promptly signed the bill into law on the same day.

With the enactment of the law, Emir Sanusi's domain was reduced from 44 local government areas to only eight.

The Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission on Thursday interrogated Isa Bayero, a former top aide to Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi II. He was accused of misappropriation of funds of Kano Emirate.

PREMIUM TIMES had reported that the anti-graft body invited the former aide to the emir in a letter dated May 2 and addressed to the Kano Emirate Council Secretary.

Mr Bayero, after appearing before the investigation team, told reporters that he was presented with some documents, which he went through and requested for time to study.

"I was not given any specific time to report but if I am able to go through the documents (today), May 9, I will call back the following day to face the panel for further interrogation," he said.

There is speculation in Kano that Mr Bayero, an uncle to Emir Sanusi, had leaked some emirate's financial documents to the state government, which led to the investigation of the emir.

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