Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Muhammadu Sanusi II, Emir of Kano, former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, outspoken, fearless and audacious, but nevertheless controversial, has fallen from the high pinnacle, from grace to grass. Sanusi has been dethroned as Emir of Kano and exiled to Nasarawa State.
O, how has the mighty fallen! Sanusi who passed through the proverbial seven forests, climbed seven hills, and crossed seven rivers, now drowned in a stream, a high class intellectual, being routed by a barely literate. What a pity!
Controversy personified, Sanusi had had it rough with the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan, when he stirred the hornet’s nest about a missing US$20 billion from the coffers of the NNPC. As a result, he was suspended from office and was not allowed to complete his tenure as CBN Governor.
He however later emerged in 2014 as Emir of Kano, with the title: Muhammadu Sanusi II, following the death of the former occupant, Alhaji Ado Bayero.
Never to be cowed or intimidated, Sanusi always spoke truth to power. He spoke against the political leadership in the North that is only interested in amassing personal wealth while the vast majority of the people in the area are pauperized and not able to eke out a living. He spoke against the almajiri system in the North, which has kept millions of children in the area out of school.
Sanusi had therefore stepped on many powerful toes, those who hold political power in the North, the northern establishment, who benefit from the feudal aristocracy in the North. They were not very uncomfortable with the man. They hated him and resolved to deal with him.
Accordingly, on Monday, March 9, 2020, Nigerians woke up to hear that Muhammadu Sanusi II, Emir of Kano, has been dethroned by the Kano State Executive Council, led by Governor Abdullahi Ganduje.
The news of his dethronement was contained in a statement signed by the Secretary to the Kano State Government, Alhaji Usman Alhaji, where he accused Muhammadu Sanusi of insubordination, refusal to attend official meetings, and breach of Kano Emirate Laws.
Not only that Sanusi was dethroned as Emir of Kano, he was subsequently exiled to Nasarawa State, where he would spend the rest of his life. What a tragedy! What a catastrophe!
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi is made to suffer the fate of his grandfather, Sir Muhammadu Sanusi I, KBE, Emir of Kano, from 1954-1963, who was equally dethroned and confined to Azare, due to a power tussle between him and Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sarduana of Sokoto, the former Premier of the defunct Northern Region.
Muhammadu Sanusi I was a powerful Emir who had substantial influence in the colonial Northern Nigeria. He hosted Queen Elizabeth II when she visited Kano in 1956.
Ironically, while Muhammadu Sanusi I was succeeded upon his dethronement by Alhaji Ado Bayero, his grandson, Muhammadu Sanusi II is also dethroned, to be succeeded by Ado Bayero’s son, Aminu.
To most Nigerians, the news about the dethronement of Muhammadu Sanusi II was not surprising. They had always seen it coming. Since after the 2019 general elections, Muhammadu Sanusi II had not been in the good books of the Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, who believed that the Emir had made his path so rough in that election, which he nearly lost.
Thus, as soon as Abdullahi Ganduje managed to survive the onslaught of the election, he decided to pay Sanusi back in his own coins. Having accused the Emir of sundry offences, including mismanagement of funds belonging to the Kano Emirate, Ganduje proceeded to split the Kano Emirate into four kingdoms, and left a tiny portion for Sanusi to manage.
Still not comfortable with the growing influence of Sanusi, even after he had split his kingdom, Ganduje went to his jugular by finally removing the man entirely from the throne, arrested him and exiled him to faraway Nasarawa State. What a vendetta!
Today, Abdullahi Ganduje and his cohorts may be beating their chests that they had succeeded in removing Muhammadu Sanusi II as Emir of Kano, since “might is right”, but tomorrow a different scenario may emerge. Who knows tomorrow?
Dr. Dons Eze