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Kano’s Game of Thrones by Hassan Gimba

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Hassan Gimba 01


What is happening in Kano should be of concern to not only the Kanawa or Northerners but to all Nigerians. Kano, as we all know, is the heartbeat of the North. If Kano is economically buoyant, it cascades down to the rest of the North and reflects on the nation’s GDP.

Conversely, any chaos or breach in security will affect other parts of the North, thereby stretching the capacity of our security agencies with all the attendant consequences.

This is why the ongoing ”Game of Thrones” in the ancient city of Kano should concern every Nigerian.

There were some misgivings in some quarters when Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, popularly called SLS – fresh from a controversial sacking from the office of the governor of Nigeria’s Central Bank by then President Goodluck Jonathan – was made the Emir of Kano, against all odds, by Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso on 8th June 2014, in a move that lends credence to the saying that there is no permanent friend or enemy in politics but permanent interests.

In Kwankwaso’s first tenure as governor, he and SLS, then with the First Bank, were more like “enemies”, which made the government of Kano State close its account with the bank as its request for Sanusi’s sack was not acceded to.

Yet there were misgivings too when, again against all odds, he was dethroned by former Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje on 9th March 2020. To get at him, Ganduje “shattered” the revered Kano Emirate into five pieces.

Now there are more misgivings after the current governor of Kano State, Abba Yusuf, himself a Prince, dethroned the five Emirs created by Ganduje and reinstated SLS and returned the emirate to its former status.

The issue, ordinarily a state affair within the governor’s authority, is threatening to escalate and burst onto the national landscape. That is, if it has not already, what with the National Security Adviser (NSA) weighing in.

The thing is, the princes’ insatiable greed for power, influence, relevance and wealth has made them rush open-eyed into the crossfires of ambitious and unscrupulous politicians who keep no captives. To quote from ‘Macbeth’, the Kano princes have “murdered sleep and so shall sleep no more.”

However, the most pitiable here is the common man who whatever is happening in Kano will neither put garri on his table nor solve any of his mammoth and growing problems. It is the common man who would be used as a foot soldier to disrupt the peace of the community.

Hassan Gimba is the publisher and editor-in-chief of Neptune Prime.

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