The Kano State government has rejected a Tuesday court judgment declaring the banishment of deposed Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, and the award of N10 million to him as compensation.
Justice Anwuli Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja, had awarded the N10 million compensation against the state and other respondents comprising the police, the State Security Service (SSS) and the Attorney-General of Kano State, and also ordered the state government to tender a public apology to Sanusi in two national dailies.
The Court also held that the Emirate Council Law, 2019, which was relied upon by government in banishing the Emir was in conflict with the Nigerian constitution, and therefore, is null and void.
Justice Chikere had also stated that with the Nigerian constitution being supreme and above the Emirate Council Law, the Kano State government had no basis to banish the former Emir as he had the “right to live anywhere, including Kano State, as enshrined in the country’s constitution.”
However, the government, in reacting to the ruling in an interview on Wednesday with a Kano-based online news platform, Solace, the Commissioner for Justice Attorney-General, Musa Lawal, insisted that the Nigerian constitution recognises both tradition and custom and that they should be protected.
Lawal added that going by the customs and tradition as enshrined in the state’s laws, the deposed Emir stands banished and that the government would do everything possible to protect the custom and tradition of Kano people.
“Where a person that is part of the emirate decides to destroy the tradition and custom and do only things that he deems fit, will not be allowed,” Lawal said.
“For over 100 years, it has been the tradition and custom in our clime that when an Emir is deposed, he is banished to another community and there was nothing unusual in the case of Malam Muhammadu Sanusi II.
“We reject the ruling of the Federal High Court and as far as the government of Kano State is concerned, Malam Muhammadu Sanusi II remains banished,” he added.