A Kano State High Court presided over by Justice Usman Na’Abba on Thursday nullified the new Kano State Emirs Appointment and Disposition Law 2019.
Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, under the law, created four new additional emirates.
In his ruling, Justice Na’Abba said the state House of Assembly had violated Section 101 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, empowering the assembly to enact its rules and guidelines of proceedings.
He said the state Assembly rules and regulations had to be in conformity with the constitution.
He declared null and void the proceedings of the state House of Assembly conducted on 6, 7 and 8th of May, 2019.
He averred that the state governor could not assent to a bill whose procedure violated the 1999 Constitution.
The judge had earlier dismissed the preliminary objections advanced by the Kano State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Ibrahim Mukthar, that the court lacked the locus standi to challenge the Kano State Emirs Appointment and Disposition Law.
The law was challenged by the then member representing Gwarzo in the Kano State House of Assembly, Rabi’u Gwarzo.
Justice Na’Abba said Gwarzo, who was the Minority-Leader in the state House of Assembly, had locus standi in the case, just as he also restrained all the new four emirs created by Ganduje to stop parading themselves as first-class emirs.
Counsel for the plaintiff, Maliki Kuliya, in his reaction, said with the ruling, his client was justified.
Also reacting, Mukthar, who is also the fifth defendant in the case, said all the defendants in the suit would study the judgment after which they would determine their next line of action.
The four affected emirates are that of Bichi, Rano, Gaya, and Karaye which were created from the Kano Emirate Council and their monarchs elevated as first-class emirs.
Ganduje had created the four emirates from the Kano Emirate headed by Muhammadu Sanusi.
The suit was filed by Gwarzo, challenging the law, establishing the four additional emirate councils.
A statement issued and signed by the state Commissioner for Information, Mallam Mohammed Garba, regretted that despite the constitutional power and authority conferred on the state assembly ‘on such a progressive and important issue, the court ruled otherwise.’
It added, “Despite the ruling, the government still recognises the monarchs as first-class emirs and will continue dealing with them as such.”
Meanwhile, hundreds of youths spread across the four newly-created emirates nullified by the Kano State High Court, staged peaceful protests against the dissolution of the emirates.
The youths simultaneously staged the protests at Karaye, Rano, Bichi and Gaya emirates, displaying placards with various inscriptions.
At Karaye Emirate, the youths converged on the local government secretariat along the Rogo Road and trekked to the Emir’s palace about two kilometres away.
The demonstrators, which included women, schoolboys, angry youths and almajiri, carried placards with different inscriptions such as, ‘We stand by our Emirate,’ and ‘We stand with Emir of Karaye.”
Similarly, at Bichi Emirate, dozens of youths were sighted at some strategic spots in the town, as they joined the protests against the court’s decision.
In Rano Emirate, it was the same scenario as youths, including women were sighted around the Emir’s palace, chanting “Bamu yadda ba”, meaning, “it is unacceptable” in Hausa parlance.
Also, in Gaya, dozens of youths were sighted displaying banners and placards on motorbikes, with inscriptions expressing their displeasure over the decision of the court to sack the emirs.
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