Top echelon of the All Progressives Congress, APC, are in Kano intensifying lobby for the emergence of former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Lamido Sanusi as the new Emir of Kano, sources at both Government House Kano and the Kano Emirate Council have told PREMIUM TIMES.
Mr. Sanusi is engaged in intense battle with Sunusi Bayero, a son of late Emir Ado Bayero, who died on Friday, in a bid to be named successor to the elder Bayero.
The sources said APC national leader, Bola Tinubu, has been in Kano since yesterday (Saturday) leading the lobby for the selection of the former CBN boss.
Mr. Tinubu is joined by former Governors of Kwara and Gombe states, Bukola Saraki and Danjuma Goje, as well as another party stalwart, Kashim Imam.
PREMIUM TIMES learnt that the APC chieftains poured into Kano after receiving intelligence that some northern traditional rulers sympathetic to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, were putting pressure on the kingmakers and Governor Rabiu Kwankawaso to overlook Mr. Sanusi and appoint his rival to the coveted throne.
We also learnt that the four members of the kingmaker council selected their nominees for the consideration of the governor last night. A source however said “the governor asked them to go back and return with a single consensus candidate”.
He said the kingmakers returned with the named of Sunusi Bayero as their choice. That could not be independently verified at this time as another source said it was Lamido Sanusi that was selected by the kingmakers.
“Left to the kingmakers, the late emir’s son would have been named already, but of course Lamido Sanusi also has his strong support and as it is now, it is 50-50,” he said.
According to chapter 41 of the laws on Appointment and Deposition of Emirs (Section 3 Sub section 1), “Upon the death, resignation or deposition of any Emir, the Governor may in conjunction with the council approve as the successor of such Emir any person appointed in that behalf by those entitled by tradition to appoint in accordance with such tradition and if no appointment is made before the expiration of the period prescribed by such tradition, the governor may himself appoint such a person as he may deem fit and proper to carry out such duties incidental to the Emirship as may be necessary to perform.”
Sub section 2 also states that “In the case of any dispute, the governor after due inquiry and consultation shall be the sole judge as to whether any appointment of an Emir has been made in accordance with the tradition”.
A source at Government House, Kano, said Mr. Kwankwaso is under tremendous pressure.
“On the one hand, most of the establishment including the emirate and elders are rooting for the late emir’s son while the state’s technocratic class and political establishment are supporting the banker,” the source said.
“The governor is between the devil and the deep blue sea. If he goes with the wish of the establishment, he will be risking his political future within the APC, while favouring the political angle will also seriously affect his popularity.”
The Mood in Kano
Meanwhile, security has been heightened in and around the city as residents await the news of the new emir.
A resident of Fagge area of the city, Bashir Sarki, said many people are in joyous mood especially those supporting Sunusi Bayero.
“Many people are already celebrating and telling anyone who care to listen that Sunusi Bayero has been selected as the new emir,” he said.
He said posters of the new emir can be seen on many vehicles in the city.
Governor Kwankwaso, government insiders say, may go into a last round of meetings with the kingmakers by 2 p.m. after which the new emir may be announced.