The police on Thursday ended their four-day siege to the palatial official residence of the traditional ruler of Kano Emirate.
The police had on Monday deployed armed officers and men in the palace following a series of protests by some youths who kicked against the appointment of a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Lamido Sanusi, as the new Emir of Kano.
The PUNCH gathered on Thursday that following the end of the siege, preparations were being put in place to ensure that Sanusi, who had been ruling Kano from the state Government House since Monday, relocated to the palace.
Confirming the development, the Director of Press and Public Relations to Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso, Baba Dantiye, told one of our correspondents on the telephone, that Sanusi would move into the place within the next few days.
“I just got the information that the police have left the palace. Preparations will now start to ensure that the emir relocates to the palace,” he said.
But Dantiye noted that since policemen had also been withdrawn from the Government House, Kano youths had taken over the responsibility of guarding the place.
“Patriotic young men are guarding the Government House now as a result of the withdrawal of policemen by the federal authorities,” Dantiye wrote in a post on his Facebook page on Thursday.
Sanusi is expected to lead the 7th day Fidau prayers for the late Emir, Ado Bayero, on Friday (today) by 12 noon.
It was gathered that the new traditional ruler will subsequently lead Muslim faithful in Kano during the Friday Jumat prayers.
The new Emir on Thursday received the leader of Tijjaniyya sect in Africa, Khalifa Sheikh Isiyaka Rabi’u, at the Government House.
According to a message on Dantiye’s Facebook page, Rabi’u offered prayers to God to grant the new emir protection and wisdom to rule over his people.
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party and the All Progressives Congress lawmakers in the House of Representatives disagreed on Thursday over the allegation by Kano State Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso that President Goodluck Jonathan was behind the crisis that followed the appointment of Mallam Lamido Sanusi as the Emir of Kano.
Kwankwaso, who also said Jonathan had no business in the appointment of Sanusi as an emir, said it was worrisome that he (President) was meddling in the affairs of Kano State.
The governor had spoken during an interview with a cross-section of journalists on Tuesday. Excerpt of the interview was posted on the Twitter handle of Kwankwaso and the Facebook page of his Director of Press and Public Realations, Baba Dantiye.
Kwankwaso had called on Nigerians and the international community to hold Jonathan liable if anything ontoward happened to him, his family and the people of his state.
“I have told my friends, and people of Kano, other Nigerians and indeed the international community to hold Jonathan responsible for whatever happens to Kwankwaso, his family or even the people of Kano State,” he had stated on Wednesday.
But, while the PDP caucus in the House said the governor was “playing politics” by making such an allegation, the APC caucus argued that the governor’s allegation called for an investigation.
The leaders of the caucuses spoke exclusively in separate telephone interviews with The PUNCH in Abuja.
The Deputy Majority Leader of the House, Mr. Leo Ogor, who spoke on behalf of the PDP caucus, described Kwankwaso’s allegation as “wild and without proof.”
Ogor noted that it was unfair of the governor to make such an “unsubstantiated allegation” in an already heated political environment.
He added, “There is nothing the PDP-led Federal Government has done to show that it is responsible for any crisis in Kano.
“He who alleges must prove. Let him bring his proof to the public and substantiate the allegation.
“This attempt to play politics with every issue just to score cheap political points is unnecessary.
According to him, were Kwankwaso to have facts, he should have gone to the police and other security agencies to make a report.
“If he has facts, let him got to the police and other security agencies to make his case. It is the responsibility of the security agencies to take it up from there,” Ogor added.
However, the Minority Leader of the House and APC caucus leader, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, disputed Ogor’s position that the APC governor was merely playing politics.
Gbajabiamila argued that anybody raising such an allegation as did Kwankwaso must have gathered substantial evidence.
Rather than dismissing the allegation as political, he advised the PDP-led government to investigate it.
Gbajabiamila said, “Any allegation that insinuates death threat must be taken seriously.
“It is even more serious when the allegation is against the Presidency.
“We recall that former President Obasanjo once told the nation that this administration had some persons marked for death.
“This allegation by the Kano governor is something similar to what Obasanjo raised; so, it is not political at all.
“I am not saying that it is true (allegation), but it should be taken very seriously.
“I want to give the Presidency the benefit of the doubt and only hope that the allegation is not correct.
“I have not known Kwankwaso to make frivolous statements before; it is a reason to take his allegation seriously.”