EMIR of Kano Alhaji Lamido Sanusi Mohammed has dismissed suggestions that he misappropriated N3.4bn ($9.4m) made available to him by the Kano State government pointing out that the total amount he met upon assuming office was N1.89bn.
Over recent months, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje and Emir Sanusi have been involved in a public spat over the traditional rulers decision not to back during the last general elections. Governor Ganduje subsequently asked anti-graft agencies to probe the finances of the Kano Emirates Council and then now decided to follow this up by carving it into four places in a bid to reduce the emir’s influence.
According to political insiders, Governor Ganduje is not happy about the fact that the emir backed his political rival during the last Kano State gubernatorial elections. After the anti-graft commission submitted its report, the governor considered suspending the emir and sent him an official query after it was reported that the monarch misappropriated N3.4bn between 2014 and 2017.
In response to the query, Emir Sanusi said the total amount he met in the accounts of the Kano Emirates Council on his assumption of office was N1,893,378,927.38. He replied: “You may wish to note that at the time His Highness was appointed Sarkin Kano, the exact amount in the accounts of the Kano Emirate Council was N1,893,378,927.38. It is also important to note that His Highness, Sarkin Kano, is not the accounting officer of the Kano Emirate Council but the secretary of the council.”
As the public spat continues, the presidency has raised a four-man committee to broker peace between the governor and the emir. Last Friday, they were invited to Abuja for talks which may halt the deposition processes already initiated by the Kano State government.
Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, the chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum heads the committee. Other members include Governors Abubakar Bello of Niger State, Governor Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi and Governor Muhammad Abubakar of Jigawa State, while the Office of the Chief of Staff to the President will coordinate its activities.
However, the team may have to harmonise its report with that of a similar intervention committee put together by a business mogul Alhaji Aliko Dangote. Apparently, the presidency opted to intervene because of the grave security implications of a breakdown of law and order in Kano State.
Governor Ganduje and Emir Sanusi exchanged pleasantries at Friday’s meeting just as they did at the Eid grounds in Kano on Tuesday. It is believed that they flew back together to Kano on the same plane.