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Kano Assembly probes Emir Sanusi

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•Investigates monarch on 8-count charge of misappropriation of emirate council’s funds, anti-Islamic practices, others

Kano State House of Assembly yesterday set up an eight-man committee to investigate the alleged misconduct of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi 11.

The committee would also investigate allegations of misappropriation of funds of the Kano Emirate Council.

The assembly set up the committee after a member representing Nasarawa Local Government Area, Alhaji Ibrahim Gama, raised a motion of urgent public importance on the topic.

Gama frowned at the recent comments credited to the emir over the proposed Kano lightrail project and argued: “The statement from the emir was capable of tarnishing his image, the government’s and that of the assembly.

“The emir, during his speech in Kaduna, alleged that the Kano State Governor (Umar Ganduje) and his entourage, including me as the chairman of the House Committee on Works, wasted one month in China seeking for loan to construct rail.

“The emir’s statement was not true. We spent only four days in China, and our visit was to find out the capability of the company to handle the rail project.”

He took a swipe at Emir Sanusi for sending his daughter to represent him in one of the functions organised by Bring Back Our Girls group in Abuja, describing it as inimical to the tradition of the emirate council.

“There are many responsible emirate council members who could represent him at the programme. This is the first time we are seeing such, in the historical traditional home,” he added.

He held that the mode of dressing of the emir’s daughter, during the programme, was an embarrassment to the emirate council and the tradition of Kano people.

He also accused Sanusi of introducing religious issues contrary to the teachings of Islam, saying such things were capable of disgracing the religion.

Gama further accused the emir of involving himself in political issues, misappropriation of emirate council’s funds and making statements against President Muhammadu Buhari.

The assembly debated the matter and set up the committee to investigate the allegations.

The committee, headed by the member representing Warawa Local Government Area, Alhaji Labaran Abdul, has two weeks within which to report to the assembly.

Last month, chairman of the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission, Muhiyi Magaji, said its probe of alleged “questionable expenditures and financial misappropriation” on the Kano Emirate Council had no political motive.

He said: “The investigation is not in any way politically motivated but was aimed at getting to the root of the allegations.”

He said the decision by the commission to investigate the complaints or allegations was borne out of the need to ensure fairness.

“The agency, in carrying out the probe, was fulfilling its mandate as established by the law,” he added.

“I wonder why people are questioning the reason behind the investigation and at the same time trying to pre-empt what is being investigated,” Muhiyi queried.

He insisted that no amount of pressure would deter the commission from carrying out its duties, not even from the governor.

On April 25, 2017, Sanusi said he was ready for any probe on his expenditures for the three years he has spent on the throne, saying his hands were clean.

Sanusi, who spoke through Walin Kano, Alhaji Mahez Wali, said allegations of questionable expenditure were “baseless, mischievous and utterly designed to tarnish his image and that of Kano Emirate Council.” He stressed his readiness to answer questions from relevant agencies to clear his name.

The emir spoke against the backdrop of allegations that he squandered billions of naira inherited from the late Emir Ado Bayero.

Walin Kano, in a seven-page text made available to newsmen in Kano, declared that N4.3billion was spent since he ascended the throne, based on the Kano Emirate Council’s budgetary provision, and not the reported N6billion.

He explained: “Before the appointment of Muhammadu Sanusi II as Emir, Kano Emirate Council had over N2.8 billion in fixed deposit accounts, out of which over N981 million was used for the burial of the late Emir Ado Bayero.

“About N1.8 billion was the amount of money inherited by Muhammadu Sanusi II against the alleged N4 billion.”

Giving a breakdown of the emir’s expenditure, the Walin Kano admitted “payment of N37,054,192.06 to Airtel, as the emir is identified with only one local mobile phone, which he uses within and outside the country.

“Majority of the charges are that of roaming, which are normal. Similarly, telephone bills of the palace are offset by the council, particularly when it comes within the provision of the budget.

“The emirate council received N1,727,938,660.42 as grants between July 30, 2014 and March 1, 2017, over and above the alleged figure of N1,672,953, 660.00.”

On the acquisition of two Rolls Royce cars, Walin Kano said: “The exotic cars were never purchased by the emirate council, but donated to the emir by his friends.

“The payment of N142,800,000 were expended on two bulletproof vehicles based on the advice and approval of the state government.”

 

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