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JUST IN; Sokoto Governor allegedly planning to dethrone Sultan – Group raises the alarm

JUST IN; Sokoto Governor allegedly planning to depose Sultan – Group raises the alarm

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has expressed concern over alleged plans by Sokoto State Governor Ahmed Aliyu to depose the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III.

In a statement on Monday, Prof. Isiaq Akintola, the Executive Director of MURIC, raised an alarm about this development.

This comes amidst ongoing controversy and tension following the deposition of several monarchs in Kano State.

Earlier, Governor Aliyu had removed 15 traditional rulers from their positions due to various alleged offenses.


Akintola emphasised that Nigerian Muslims vehemently oppose any idea of deposing the Sultan.

Akintola said: “Feelers in circulation indicate that the governor may descend on the Sultan of Sokoto any moment from now using any of the flimsy excuses used to dethrone the 15 traditional rulers whom he removed earlier.

“MURIC advises the governor to look before he leaps. The Sultan’s stool is not only traditional. It is also religious. In the same vein, his jurisdiction goes beyond Sokoto. It covers the whole of Nigeria. He is the spiritual head of all Nigerian Muslims.

“Therefore, any governor who tampers with the stool of the Sultan will have Nigerian Muslims to reckon with because the Sultan combines the office of the Sultan of Sokoto and that of the President General of the NSCIA.”

The leader of MURIC cautioned Governor Aliyu against pushing Nigerian Muslims towards drastic revolutionary actions. He pointed out that accepting a traditional ruler as a leader has long been viewed as a necessary compromise within Nigeria’s structure, which Muslims have historically accommodated.

He said, “A military governor, Col. Yakubu Muazu, exposed this soft underbelly when he deposed Sultan Ibrahim Dasuki on 20th April, 1996. Nigerian Muslims will be forced to make a hard decision if Sokoto governors continue to diminish the authority of the Sultan.

“For the avoidance of any doubts, Sultan Muhammad Sa’d Abubakar is not only the Sultan of Sokoto but the Sultan of the Nigerian people. His performance and style of leadership have warmed him into the hearts of Nigerians.

“Nigerian Muslims North and South of the country may be constrained to pick Islamic scholars only as President General of the NSCIA and overall leader of Nigerian Muslims.

“It will be farewell to the leadership of traditional rulers over the NSCIA and an irreversible departure from Sokoto’s priviledged leadership position. But history will not be kind to Col. Yakubu Muazu and Ahmed Aliyu for ruining the chances of Sokoto.

“Once is happenstance, twice is a coincidence, the third time is enemy action. If the deposition of a Sultan and NSCIA leader happens a second time, Nigerian Muslims will not allow the embarrassment to happen a third time.
“MURIC reiterates its call on the Sokoto State House of Assembly to either repeal or review the state’s chieftaincy laws by adding the phrase ‘except the Sultan of Sokoto’ to Section 6, Cap 26 of the Laws of Northern Nigeria which empowers the state governor to depose the emirs including the Sultan.

“We urge Northern elites and Islamic scholars based in the North to intervene before it is too late. This is the time to lobby the Sokoto State House of Assembly and the governor himself. If the chieftaincy laws of Kano State can be repealed within 24 hours, nothing stops that of Sokoto State from being reviewed in favour of immunity for the office of the Sultan in a single day to save Nigerian Muslims from humongous embarrassment.”

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