Motto: Come quench your ignorance. Refuse a drink at your own eventual peril.
The Most Elaborate Guide on What Has Been Happening in Zaria Emirate Council and Kaduna State Over the Past 1 Year
1.0 - Tussle for the throne
1.1 - Emergence of the New Emir
1.2 - Pledge of Allegiance by the then Yariman Zazzau
1.3 - Court Battle
1.4 - Death Threats and Attacking of Justice Kabir Dabo
1.5 - Mysterious Death of Iyan Zazzau
1.6 - Stripping Ciroman Zazzau of his Title
1.7 - Plans to “Deal” with Wazirin Zazzau Uncovered
1.8 - Unfair Turbaning of Magajin Garin Zazzau & Iyan Zazzau
1.9 - Expulsion of Residents of the Palace
2.0 - The Growing Influence of Ousted Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido; North’s Oritsejafor
2.1 - A Dog Vomits and then Swallows it
2.2 - The Three-Pronged Love Affair, Abba Kyari and the Thailand Controversy
2.3 - Prince of Zazzau: The Menace of Ambassador Bamalli
2.4 - El-Rufa’i and the Mystery of Dadiyata’s Disappearance
2.5 - What Does the Future Hold in Store for the People of Kaduna State and Zaria in Particular?
September 20th, 2020 will always be remembered by Northern Nigerians and especially the people of Zaria as the day their Royal Father, Alhaji Dr. Shehu Idris, passed away after 45 years on the throne. His reign as one of the longest-serving monarchs in the whole of Nigeria came with a lot of progress that continues to be appreciated by everyone to this day. With his passing began the start of some disastrous events led by the people mentioned at the start of this piece.
1.0. TUSSLE FOR THE THRONE OF ZAZZAU
When Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufa’i came to commiserate with the people of Zaria over the death of Emir Shehu Idris, he made one thing very clear to the people and then later on to the kingmakers — That he would choose the candidate that is recommended by the Council of Kingmakers. The Kingmakers, headed by Wazirin Zazzau, Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu, were summoned by the Governor, where he assured them that he would not go outside of any candidates that they recommended to him. After all, those top candidates would have to be screened very well to ensure that the best emerges. This screening would also involve declaration of assets, career portfolio, checks by the DSS, amongst others.
While the anticipation towards hearing who the new Emir would be, there were already two people who stood out from the rest of the candidates. They were Malam Muhammad Munir Ja’afaru, OFR, Mni, formerly Yariman Zazzau and now Madakin Zazzau, son of the late Emir Malam Ja’afaru dan Isiyaku, and the late Iyan Zazzau, OON, Alhaji Bashari Aminu, son of the late Emir Muhammadu Aminu. These two Princes were seen as the frontrunners for the coveted throne. The third to come after them was Alhaji Aminu Shehu Idris, the Turakin Zazzau and son of the deceased Emir, Shehu Idris.
From the Barebari ruling house, one of the reasons why Malam Muhammad Munir Ja’afaru was considered a top contender is because of his enviable CV and generally-liked demeanor. Aside chairing numerous organizations, banks and panels, he was also the Director General is of NIMASA at just 37 years old. While serving as the Director General of the Maritime Authority, he was also the Chairman of the Nigerian Unity Bank. He was Director of the FSG Bank International and Director of Leasing Company of Nigeria.
He is also a one-time Chairman of Peugeot Automobile Nigeria Limited. He is a practicing lawyer.
During the Presidency of Olusegun Obasanjo, he was appointed Chairman, National Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) from 2001-2004. It was during his tenure that the project in Fanisau was started in Kano State and he also commissioned the Calabar Export Processing Zone.
His father, Emir Ja’afaru Dan Isiyaku was the sixteenth Sarkin Zazzau, reigning from 1937 to 1959 when he died when he was only three years old. As Emir of Zaria, he was administrative head of Zaria Emirate Native Authority which consisted of seventeen districts and he was responsible for the maintenance of law and order within the emirate.
His array of influential friends from within and outside of Nigeria is something to behold. And most importantly, he has always been loved by people, irrespective of their tribe or religion. He is the District Head of Basawa. He recently got an appointment from the Federal Government as Member, National Honours Award Committee.
The same thing could be said of the late Iyan Zazzau, Alhaji Bashari Aminu. Older than Malam Munir Ja’afaru and also a seasoned statesman, a chartered accountant and a very successful businessman, he was also seen as a frontrunner for the throne. In terms of having experience in managing the affairs of people, his years of working attested to it. He was a one-time District Head of Sabon-Gari, Zaria.
He was a fellow of the Institute of Financial Accountants (UK) and a fellow of the Certified National Accountants of Nigeria (CNA). He served as chairman/director of boards of many companies.
His father, Emir Muhammadu Aminu was the 17th Emir of Zazzau, and Chairman of Zazzau Emirate Council. He was succeeded by Alhaji Shehu Idris on 8th February, 1975, following his death. Emir Aminu was selected by the Council of Kingmakers to succeed Emir Malam Ja’afaru Dan Isiyaku, the father of Malam Muhammad Munir Ja’afaru.
The third frontrunner for the throne was Alhaji Aminu Shehu Idris, the son of the immediate deceased Emir. Like Iyan Zazzau, he is also from the Katsinawa ruling family. He is the holder of the Turakin Zazzau title. For years, he has been working with the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
For the majority of people in Zaria, these three candidates stood out. The late Bashari Aminu for his experience in running the affairs of people, Munir Ja’afaru for his all-round aptness and overwhelming love of the people in and out of Zaria, and Aminu Shehu Idris for being the eldest surviving son of the Late Emir Shehu while being respectable as well.
1.1. EMERGENCE OF THE NEW EMIR
After a seemingly-endless wait for the announcement of a new Emir of Zazzau that stretched to 17 days, the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir Ahmad El-Rufa’i finally chose Ambassador Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli to be Emir Shehu’s successor. Not only did this somewhat unexpected move stupefied the majority of Nigerians, this also confirmed all the rumours circulating that El-Rufa’i, alongside sacked Kano Emir, Sanusi Lamido, Bashir El-Rufa’i (the Governor’s elder brother), and Hadiza Bala Usman (former DG of Nigerian Ports Authority), planned this the whole time.
I dare you to go around asking Zaria people how the atmosphere felt that day, and a solid 9 out of 10 would tell you how almost everyone felt paralyzed by the news. It felt again as if that was the day Emir Shehu died. How unfortunate! People were still mourning the death of the long-serving Emir when the news broke. This tells you how the majority of the people of Zaria have always felt about Ahmed Bamalli.
Remember this is someone who was always disrespectful to the late Emir Shehu during his reign. This is notwithstanding the fact that Emir Shehu gave him a daughter to marry. Bamalli has always seemed to be harbouring a grudge that he inherited from his father who once vied for the throne of Zazzau with Emir Shehu. I still recall in primary school when Bamalli joined our school. Even though he was my senior by two years, I was able to know much about him. When he came, even the teachers were pointing at him and labelling him as “son of the Emir’s enemy.”
There is a particular incident which is still fresh in the minds of the people of Zaria: Upon the ascension of El-Rufa’i to the office of Governor in Kaduna State, Bamalli had some of his supporters chanting “sabon Gwamna, sabon Sarki” near the Emir’s Palace in Zaria. For any person who has an understanding of Hausa, this would mean “a new governor has come, and so would a new king,” sending a warning to Emir Shehu that he would be dethroned in favour of Bamalli.
The reader has to understand the relationship and closeness that El-Rufa’i and Bamalli share. Both of them hail from Kwarbai, in Zaria City, and their families are said to go way back. It all began when Bamalli was about starting his mandatory 1-Year Youth Service program in Lagos. Deeming it unwise to have young Bamalli sent to Lagos with no family to cater for him there, his father was told about a certain Bashir El-Rufa’i, who is also from Kwarbai, living in Lagos at the time. That was how Ahmed was put under the wing of Bashir and a relationship started. Now you can see for yourself how Bamalli banked on that relationship and worked it to his advantage and became Emir.
Confirmed reports stated that prior to the announcement of Bamalli as Emir, El-Rufa’i made it clear to his confidantes that he would never select the Late Iyan Zazzau, Bashari Aminu, even though he had 3 votes from the Kingmakers. This is because the two never saw eye to eye because of Iyan Zazzau’s well-known affiliation to the PDP as opposed to El-Rufa’i’s APC. As for Munir Ja’afaru who never dabbled in politics, El-Rufa’i always sought his advice on how to solve security issues especially in Southern Kaduna where Munir is loved dearly.
Few days to the announcement, El-Rufa’i made it known to some people that he was naming Munir Ja’afaru as the new Emir. Whether that was meant to trigger Munir should he decide not to do that out of supreme deception, only Allāh knows. Bamalli had already given up. Sanusi Lamido had tried in vain to persuade El-Rufa’i to choose Bamalli but he figured it was proving difficult, so he left for Lagos, his second place of exile.
A well-known groomer of young boys called Sani Wakili, Bamalli’s confidante, was heard boasting to people that Bamalli would be named king. According to him, all the soothsayers he sought service of had predicted that. By Allāh, this is what was said and so many people in Zaria are aware of this. He even went as far as saying that Bamalli was made to enter a designated area in his birthday suit. It would not even be long after Bamalli’s ascension that Sani Wakili claimed Bamalli owed him money as a result of royal attires he bought. Indeed, one could never sleep in a pigsty and expect to come out clean.
The crucial moment came when Mansur Nuhu Bamalli (formerly Barde Kerarriyan Zazzau and now Magajin Garin Zazzau), alongside his Aunt and Bashir El-Rufa’i, the Governor’s elder brother, took the Governor’s mother with them in a car all the way to Kaduna where the Governor was keeping away from all the pressure. There, the Governor’s mother instructed him to name Bamalli as the new Emir, citing their closeness with him as the reason. At that moment, El-Rufa’i gave the order that the Appointment Letter of Munir Ja’afaru which had already been printed out and signed be altered in favour of Bamalli. This alteration was done so poorly that one could see clearly how a name was struck out and Bamalli’s name was put instead. This Letter is still available for anyone who wishes to see for themselves. And so Bamalli became Emir, to the continued disappointment of an overwhelming majority of the people of Zaria and the whole of Nigeria.
1.2. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE OF THE THEN YARIMAN ZAZZAU
In a move which completely unnerved most people and even Bamalli, Munir Ja’afaru, who was Yariman Zazzau at that time, was the first major titleholder to pay homage and pledge allegiance to the new Emir. This is despite the fact that he was seen as the overwhelming favourite to be named Emir with people wary of El-Rufa’i’s disdain for the Late Iyan Zazzau. This herculean display of courage and humility was enough to even bring Mansur Bamalli, the initiator of almost every mischief to tears. Their father had a very good relationship with Munir.
Even before Bamalli was announced, the public had grown weary of El-Rufa’i’s delay tactics. First, he claimed he was reading historical books on how past Emirs were appointed. Then he continued veering off from the topic which needed swift resolution. All of this was to make sure Bamalli had completed his mandatory 14-days self isolation, having been smuggled from Thailand by the Kaduna State Government, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi and Hadiza Bala Usman. On several instances, the DSS had warned El-Rufa’i to choose the candidate that is most-acceptable to the people so as to avoid a catastrophic conflict in Zaria, but he chose not to listen. As if preparing for an all-out war, the Governor sent out an army-like entourage consisting of soldiers and the police to deliver the Appointment Letter to Bamalli. One could even sense that mischief had been made as the entourage made their way into Zaria. As some people pointed out, “if indeed it was the people’s choice, there would’ve been no need for such security presence.” The security forces on that day would’ve been enough to tackle insecurity and bandit attacks that have continued to plague Kaduna State. But this is a discussion for another time.
Therefore, we must continue to show appreciation for Munir Ja’afar for averting what would have been a catastrophe of sorts in Zaria on that day. He had every right to challenge the Governor’s decision but he did not. Seeing that he pledged his allegiance to the Governor’s Emir and not the people’s, other titleholders were quick to follow suit.
1.3. COURT BATTLE
With the announcement of Bamalli as Emir, an expected chain of events began unfolding. First, it was the Late Iyan Zazzau, Alhaji Bashari Aminu, who was determined to fight for his right and that of the people of Zaria which had been taken away unfairly by the Kaduna State Governor. This was followed by dissatisfaction with Bamalli’s choice by the majority of people and also the Kingmakers after not a single vote out of the 5 was given to Bamalli.
For all of El-Rufa’i’s perceived smartness, he could have borrowed a page out of Sanusi Lamido’s Book of Dark Arts by bribing Kingmakers like he did in Kano when he was ably-supported by Kwankwaso. Sanusi was able to sway the Kingmakers to vote in his favour by bribing them with hundreds of millions of Naira. If El-Rufa’i had done this on behalf of Bamalli, gaining him a single vote, no one would have had any cause to challenge his selection in court. In so many instances, Allāh exposed Bamalli to say that he was not chosen by a single kingmaker, yet he emerged Emir. This could also be seen in his first interview with the BBC.
After all, Sanusi Lamido, while in the heat of the moment in the Kaduna State Government House, called for a meeting with the Kingmakers and offered them bribes to choose his protégé, Bamalli. This is one of the reasons he was slapped in front of El-Rufa’i by Alhaji Bashir Sa’idu, Kaduna State’s Commissioner of Finance. All kingmakers rejected his offer.
Shortly after the submission of 3 candidates out of several that the Governor was mandated to choose from, the furious El-Rufa’i made an allegation that the Late Iyan Zazzau, Alhaji Bashari Aminu had bribed the Kingmakers into awarding him the votes, because Bamalli had not gotten any. Munir Ja’afar had 1 vote and Aminu Shehu Idris had 1 also. Feeling boxed into a corner, El-Rufa’i ordered a fresh submission of names and even threatened the Kingmakers to select Bamalli. Feeling insulted, they defied his order and came up with the same candidates for him to select one from. In the end, he went out of his way to handpick his godson, Bamalli, a clear and blatant abrogation of the provisions of the laid-down Law.
1.4. DEATH THREATS AND ATTACKING OF JUSTICE KABIR DABO
The man charged with presiding over the issue of unfair choice of Bamalli as Emir by El-Rufa’i was Justice Kabir Dabo, an indigene of Zaria, Kaduna State. Even before the first court sitting, Justice Kabir Dabo had already started getting threatened by some “unknown” people. First it was an attack on his Chamber in the High Court of Zaria, Dogarawa. His things were ransacked and destroyed.
Still unperturbed by what was an obvious threat to sway the decision in favour of Bamalli, Justice Kabir Dabo continued unperturbed. Next was an attack on his residence in Zaria and also being followed by some armed people. It took the intervention of some good people to turn those thugs back on their heels.
Seeing that something had to be done to ensure Justice Kabir Dabo’s safety, the sitting had to be moved to Kaduna and away from the remote area of Dogarawa, Zaria. In the following weeks and months that followed, Justice Kabir Dabo’s allowances were held by the Kaduna State Government in order to make him dismiss the case against Bamalli. He refused to budge.
1.5. MYSTERIOUS DEATH OF IYAN ZAZZAU
That was how the proceedings continued until January 1st, 2021, when the late Iyan Zazzau, Alhaji Bashari Aminu, passed away under mysterious circumstances. January 15th, 2021, would’ve been the day for judgement and the subsequent removal of Bamalli according to most legal luminaries. The fact that the late Iyan Zazzau, the new Emir and Governor’s fiercest challenger died abruptly raised so many eyebrows. He was said to have left Zaria for Lagos where he was pronounced dead. The norm is that whenever a Muslim, his burial is not delayed except in some exceptional circumstances. The deceased’s burial was delayed for a while which continued to bother people. When he was finally brought for prayer and burial, the unmistakable look of bloodstains were seen on his white shroud. After all, the Governor had vowed to make sure Bamalli remained Emir at all costs. So soon thereafter, rumours were being spread that the late Iyan Zazzau died of Covid-19 which most of his family claimed was untrue. We, the people of the Zaria, still await Allah’s judgement on this.
In a display of utter disregard for human life and sheer stupidity and lack of character, a younger sister to Ahmadu Nuhu Bamalli, Umma, a greasy-hippopotamian sack of swine bile, was openly mocking and celebrating the death of Iyan Zazzau, Bashari Aminu. This, as I later investigated was as a result of differences she had with Karima Aminu, a daughter of late Bashari Aminu and wife of contestant Aminu Shehu Idris. After all, this is expected, considering her father, nicknamed “Nuhu Biro”, often used his pen, albeit diplomatically, to criticize rulers during his time. She continues to do so even to this day.
The implication of the death of Iyan Zazzau led to the collapse of his case against Kaduna State Government and Ahmadu Bamalli. The good people of Zaria still await Allāh’s intervention. We hope another contestant or even kingmaker whose vote was disregarded takes up the mantle and goes to court.
1.6. STRIPPING CIROMAN ZAZZAU OF HIS TITLE
Indeed, Zaria has never produced a man as infamous as Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli. This has never been more glaring until the 9th of April, 2021, when he derobed the respected 84-year-old Ciroman Zazzau, Alhaji Sa’idu Mailafiya. Bamalli alleged that Ciroman Zazzau was sacked for disrespecting him and questioning his ancestry.
Well, for starters, Alhaji Sa’idu Mailafiya has been around long enough to know the history of Zazzau Emirate and particularly the Mallawa clan, of which he is widely regarded as an esteemed member. So, if anyone is to be given the benefit of the doubt with regards to any question of history, it is Alhaji Sa’idu. You will never hear any negative comment about him, even from people that are close to Ahmadu Bamalli. Even Mansur Bamalli, Ahmadu’s brother, was astonished by the unceremonious relieving of Alhaji Sa’idu from his title of Ciroman Zazzau. So much that he criticized his brash brother in front of people.
According to Alhaji Sa’idu, Ahmadu’s grandfather was a “wanzami”, a barber and someone that does circumcision for infants, and in fact was the one who circumcised him. For people from the Mallawa clan, a “wanzami” is a descendant of their slaves and therefore nowhere near a royal descendant. And there is so much truth to that. There is just a common consensus amongst the elders of the Mallawa clan that this “travesty” should remain hidden for fear of shaming. There were some so-called historical “experts” who disputed this claim, but when you go to the real Mallawa elders, they will tell you it is indeed true. It is as a result of this that the Emir sacked Alhaji Sa’idu Mailafiya, to the shock of many people in Zaria.
In his place, Shehu Dansidi Bamalli, also from the Mallawa clan, was conferred with the title of Ciroman Zazzau. This had to be done by Ahmadu because Shehu Dansidi was one of the very first people to threaten to break out the news of Ahmadu’s checkered ancestry during the tussle for the throne. When Ahmadu, despite being younger than most of the Mallawa and also arrogant to their elders appeared to be the flag bearer for them, Shehu and other elders challenged him. It was then decided that should he emerge Emir, he would compensate them for their loyalty.
1.7. PLANS TO DEAL WITH WAZIRIN ZAZZAU AND OTHER TITLE HOLDERS UNCOVERED
Shortly after Bamalli’s unceremonious ascension to the throne of Zazzau, he began threatening the kingmakers who did not choose him. As expected, the former Wazirin Zazzau, Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu. He was immediately suspended and punished for not casting his kingmaker’s vote in favour of Bamalli.
It should be noted that it was in the course of writing this investigative report that Alhaji Aminu Waziri was stripped of his title of Wazirin Zazzau. Prior to that, he was approached by Bamalli and his stooge, Alhaji Ahmadu Abbas Fatika, Sarkin Padan Zazzau. Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu was promised back his role as Wazirin Zazzau, something he outrightly refused. Annoyed by that, Bamalli pleaded with El-Rufa’i to institute unfounded criminal charges against Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu for defying him.
Subsequently, the Kaduna State Government, on February 6th, 2021, filed a criminal complaint against Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu for alleged forgery and violation of the Official Secret Act. A report by DAILY NIGERIAN gathered that the outcome of the selection was leaked to the press by some of the contenders, who sources said were entitled to know the outcome of their contest.
In short, the case was later dismissed by the Court, having found insufficient evidence to show that the former Wazirin Zazzau was guilty.
A former New Nigerian Newspaper Secretary, Khadi Muhammad Inuwa was selected by Bamalli to be the new Wazirin Zazzau and that still leaves a lot to be desired. Khadi Inuwa was drafted in to support Bamalli ably in whatever future move to dethrone him.
It was shortly after that episode that Bamalli threatened to remove respected elder, Professor Ango Abdullahi, from his title of Magajin Rafin Zazzau and also Tafidan Zazzau, Dr. Dalhatu Sarki Tafida. According to him, those elders were disrespectful to him by not congratulating him and paying their respects to him. He also threatened to deal with some sons of the late Emir Shehu. After people got wind of the plan, he was forced to let go of his ill intent. One may wonder, how could someone who was brought in through the back door say that? “An taba haihuwa ta dubura?”
1.8. UNFAIR TURBANING OF MAGAJIN GARIN ZAZZAU AND IYAN ZAZZAU
Anything founded upon lies and deceit will definitely crumble and be unable to withstand the test of time. This is the nature of life. You cannot construct a building with a poor foundation and expect it to stand for long.
This was confirmed when Ahmadu got a golden chance to prove to his Mallawa clan that he is indeed their Emir which he failed woefully.
When El-Rufa’i named him Emir unfairly, his former title of Magajin-Garin Zazzau was left vacant. According to custom, the next in line should have been Alhaji Mu’azu Nuhu Bamalli, the immediate younger brother of Ahmadu. Mu’azu and Ahmadu are age mates, with Ahmadu being born shortly before Mu’azu. One would even mistaken Mu’azu for the elder because of his soft-spoken nature and good demeanour. The reason why Ahmadu named his full-brother Magajin Gari was obviously due to them sharing the same mother. It clearly should’ve been Alhaji Mu’azu and not Mansur as Mu’azu is older.
This led to a series of events that shook their family with people taking sides. In a sheer display of foolishness, Ahmadu even threatened one of Mu’azu’s sons and then reported him to the DSS in Kaduna. The boy would later be set free with a warning to stop talking about the matter. This is reminiscent of the instance where the new Emir reported people loyal to the late Emir Shehu, simply because they posted Shehu’s pictures on Facebook and spoke glowingly of him. To him, it was an act of disrespect.
1.9. EXPULSION OF THE RESIDENTS OF THE PALACE
When Ahmadu, El-Rufa’i’s Emir came, one of the first things he did to flame his hateful heart was expel all the people that lived in the palace. This is because they were loyal to the late Emir Shehu. It was unfair and uncalled for. These are people whose parents grew up there and have been there for generations. How could you serve them with an eviction notice without providing an alternative shelter for them? This is straight out of El-Rufa’i’s book if you ask me.
Immediately after the expulsion and on his coming back from Kaduna for a security meeting, the new Emir asked if the former inhabitants came to apologize for their loyalty to the late Emir. I wonder how one would stoop so low as to feed their ego.
This was all done in the name of renovating the palace that the Emir is even yet to spend a night in. Not a full believer that it is Allāh who watches over everyone and everything on Earth, one of the things he did upon ascension was inviting magicians and ‘yan bori to the palace to “ward off” so-called evil spirits. He sought the help of his friend, Sarkin Fulotin Katsina, Alhaji Iro Danfuloti, for everyone knows that is his forte amongst other nasty things. They would saunter around chanting incantations and spells to make the new Emir’s stay in the palace a beautiful one. But to this day, he still sleeps in houses of friends in GRA and sometimes in the house of the man-loving Sani Wakili.
2.0. THE GROWING INFLUENCE OF OUSTED EMIR OF KANO, SANUSI LAMIDO SANUSI; NORTH’S ORITSEJAFOR
Every now and then, you find people claiming to be men of God when in fact, it is as if they were the Devil’s Advocates. You find them preying upon the ignorant and the stupid of the society, having harnessed so much skill in the art of silky deception. These people are the worst in the sight of Allāh. Through lies and deception, they earn their living.
When Sanusi Lamido was dethroned by the Governor of Kano State, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, people that did not know the truth behind his sacking felt some sympathy for him. To them, it was unfair because that was the first time many of them had seen someone of that position relieved of his duties. So huge is the respect shown towards traditional rulers that that act from Ganduje was interpreted to be politically-motivated. While that is far from the truth, it continues to be seen as such by fewer people as time goes on. After all, it was Sanusi that declared war on Ganduje by siding with his benefactor, Rabi’u Kwankwaso, the man whom he bribed into making him Emir in an infamous move which led to fatal clashes in Kano. Sanusi began by speaking against Ganduje openly and urging people to vote for the PDP and Kwankwaso-backed Abba Yusuf. It did not stop there. Sanusi would have meetings with PDP stakeholders with a view to tarnishing Ganduje’s government.
Ganduje is no saint and we do not align ourselves with politicians and highly-placed people at the Fountain of Truth Nigeria. However, Sanusi went too far. A king is supposed to be a father to everyone, including the Governor. A king, despite his preferences as a human should never show something like that in public. This is to avoid dissension from the other side. Sanusi went ahead and continued with his mischief and meddling in dirty politics until Ganduje got fed up and warned him. This was after Sanusi was probed for mismanagement of Emirate funds and was almost removed from his position, only for influential people to intercede on his behalf. This was way before their clash with Ganduje which led to his downfall.
Fast-forward to the time he was banished from Kano, it was El-Rufa’i, his stooge, that picked him up, using taxpayer money in faraway Kaduna State to make him a palace in Kaduna. This is notwithstanding the fact that there are hundreds of thousands of people in Kaduna with no shelter. This is even after some unfair seizure of properties and demolition of houses with little or no compensation from his Government. And it is little wonder why no one, including the President and influential people is condemning that.
After his stay in Lagos and few visitations to Kaduna, Sanusi took advantage of the death of Emir Shehu to spend more time renovating his “palace”, knowing fully well that Bamalli, their godson would be appointed Emir by El-Rufa’i. He made sure he stayed in Kaduna until the appointment of Bamalli was confirmed. Alongside Bashir El-Rufa’i, they spun El-Rufa’i into making that decision. He did not even bother to visit Zaria to pay his condolences for the Emir’s death, only visiting when his godson was in place.
In hindsight, El-Rufa’i and Sanusi were quick to realize it was only Bamalli that would be their stooge and lapdog to the point that Sanusi would be free to act as Emir of Kaduna, having lost Kano. It is still in pursuit of power and influence that he is regarded by some followers of the Tijjaniyya Darika order to be their Khalifah/leader in Nigeria. To an outsider and someone who knows Sanusi for who he really is, this is a proof of their dishonesty and fallacy of their ways. I reiterate this because who in their right minds would consider Sanusi Lamido an Islamic leader? This is someone whose sermons get checked by Dr Bashir Aliyu Umar, a Sunni leader. Sanusi got his way into the Islamic discourse by virtue of his being in Sudan and learning Arabic for a short while after he escaped Nigerian authorities, having been part of a group that killed an Igbo man during his ABU days. He was later pardoned and reintegrated into the society. This is vintage Sanusi as everyone should know.
Until El-Rufa’i is gone from Kaduna State, Sanusi will continue to be a beneficiary of taxpayer money in Kaduna State. Last year, the Kaduna State Government, shortly after increasing tuition fees in state universities and defending that action by citing lack of funds, donated the sum of 25 Million Naira for Sanusi Lamido’s so-called “Colloqium”. Hypocrisy of the highest order.
2.1. A DOG VOMITS AND THEN SWALLOWS IT
The dog here is none other than Bashir Dabo, former Special Assistant to sacked Nigerian Ports Authority boss, Hadiza Bala Usman. No disrespect to any hardworking person struggling to make ends meet for themselves and their family, this weasel of a man was lifted straight from nothingness having just started working in Federal College of Education, Zaria some years back. Prior to that, he would always be part of a media entourage visiting the disgraced former NPA Boss while she was serving as El-Rufa’i’s Chief of Staff in Kaduna. From creating support groups and campaigning for Hadiza, he would later on be drafted by her to serve as a personal assistant and she later on proceeded with him to Nigerian Ports Authority where she was appointed DG.
It is indeed true that you never really know a person’s true colour until they are tested by the two extremities; poverty and affluence. Backed ably in his newfound position by the plundering Hadiza Bala Usman, Bashir would go on to amass and gather wealth illegally to the point that he now owns an insane amount of houses in Lagos, Kaduna State and other places. This is just a tip of the iceberg and not even mentioning the diversion of funds that everyone at NPA knows he did with his former boss and benefactor. It is as a result of his ego getting bloated that he was always disrespectful of Directors of the NPA, knowing fully well that Hadiza would back him. Ask anyone how exhilarating the mood was at NPA when Hadiza Bala Usman was suspended due to allegations of mismanagement and inability to remit funds. This, of course, did not sit well with some select few that got appointments through her and Bashir, most of them from Zaria. I have conducted an extensive investigation and interviewed some officials from NPA who pleaded for anonymity at this point. Remember, it was this same Hadiza that was always seen all over the place in private jets before her sacking. Now, she’s always in the Kaduna State government house doing publicity stunts amidst rumours of her appointment as Chief of Staff to the notoriously bigoted El-Rufa’i.
Now, the reason why Bashir’s involvement into the whole fracas is discussed is because a few months after Bamalli’s ascension to the throne, chaos unfolded when Bashir, blinded by arrogance, launched a tirade at the Zazzau Emirate Council and Bamalli, in particular. Unknown to him, he had totally confirmed suspicion of many people by saying how he donated hundreds of millions of Naira towards Bamalli’s Inauguration Ceremony as Emir. He also later insinuated how Hadiza would send him with millions of Naira to give Bamalli in his quest to become Emir. The post is nowhere to be found on on Facebook, but thankfully, so many people took a screenshot of it. I am certain he was called to order by his former boss, having faced backlash. Such is the fate of anything founded upon lies and deceit; it’s eventual crumbling.
So, the reason why Bashir felt he could say whatever he wanted is because he knew they funded the already desperate and broke Bamalli. Bamalli had just gotten back from Thailand and with no job in sight, it was planned that he be compensated with the title of Emir to further continue the Circle’s agenda. Bashir was privy to everything involving Hadiza Bala, El-Rufa’i, Sanusi Lamido and their stooge, Bamalli. His elder brother, Suleiman Ibrahim Dabo, a member of the Kaduna State House of Assembly and representative of Zaria Local Government, was already at loggerheads with Bamalli over his erroneous claim of being a full-fledged member of the Barebari Ruling Family, when in fact it is actually through his maternal line that he got the connection. This, therefore means that even if he were to get a royal title, he would be mandated to wear a turban with the “kunne daya” (one ear), meant for titleholders that are not from the ruling families. A consensus was reached that Bamalli would make sure Suleiman Dabo, Wakilin Birnin Zazzau, would be cleared of such dent. And also, Bashir bragged to his friends that there’s already a plan to reward him with the title of Yariman Zazzau, knowing fully well that Mallam Munir Ja’afaru would be “promoted” to Madakin Zazzau. Bamalli told him that anyone who accepts the title of Madaki in Zaria would eventually be consumed by it, having seen two sons of the late Emir Shehu falling mysteriously sick after accepting it. Meanwhile, Munir Ja’afaru has continued to look even better and healthier with age by the will of Allāh.
Thinking that money could get him anything, Bashir went on that tirade. Having financed his brother’s election campaign with NPA’s funds, so many concerned people are calling for an investigation into Bashir’s source of wealth. Surely, there are many influential people in Kaduna and Zaria that would get the sting of it if ever there was a fight for corruption in Nigeria.
As for Hadiza Bala Usman, she was recently cleared of that allegation but still relieved of her duties. If indeed she was innocent, I am sure she would have gotten her job back, with mostly ignorant people on social media clamouring for her return, having been successfully deceived by her Bring Back Our Girls Campaign. If ever there was a fight for corruption, the likes of Hadiza Bala Usman would be in prison and put in conversations with Diezani Allison Madueke. I am a Muslim and Northerner before anything else. Islam teaches fairness and there is no compromising on that, regardless of faith. Everyone knows if Hadiza was to be properly investigated, there would be screams of witch-hunt, sexism and war against the North. That is precisely why the Day of Reckoning is set by Allāh.
2.2. THE THREE-PRONGED LOVE AFFAIR, THAILAND CONTROVERSY AND ABBA KYARI CONNECTION
When the opportunity to make Bamalli Emir presented itself, El-Rufa’i, Sanusi Lamido and Hadiza Bala Usman teamed up and grasped it fully. Using a chartered airplane, they conspired to have Bamalli smuggled from Thailand where he is now set to answer for his crime.
Seeing that there was no way for Bamalli to get back from Thailand where he had just finished his ambassadorial tenure and with time ticking for the successor to the late Emir Shehu to be chosen, a plan was crafted to perfection, at least for a little while. Alongside his wife, Bamalli was loaded up in a container illegally and shipped to nearby Malaysia where he would board his flight to Nigeria and then Kaduna State where he would be welcomed by El-Rufa’i and Sanusi Lamido. Covid-19 was disastrous in Thailand then, leading the authorities to ban flights in and out of the country. Since then, the Thai authorities have been demanding that Bamalli go there to answer for his breach of protocol. It has been more than a year since he left Thailand unceremoniously, and it was finally in the previous month that he was reportedly set to answer the call, having been under serious pressure to do that. It is the hope of many people in Zaria and Kaduna State that he will eventually be dealt with properly.
Under the guise of going for a European tour, Bamalli made stops in places like Hungary, Germany and now London where he was pictured going to Nigerian Embassies hoping to repair the damage he had done. While in London, he had a call from Sanusi Lamido who urged him to not go to Thailand where he’ll be arrested. Now, he is seriously considering not going there. On 3rd March, 2022, he tried reaching out to former Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Dr. Dalhatu Tafida for reconciliation, having threatened to strip him of his title. Bamalli’s hope was that Tafida would then set up a meeting with Buhari who was due in London that week. However, Tafida simply rejected the talk and shut him out completely. Since then, he has been insulting Tafida and anyone that is connected to him. He has since gotten allies like Sani Sidi, a Governorship candidate with PDP and Muhammad Sani Dattijo, from the APC, to join his side and protect him from an inevitable impeachment when El-Rufa’i is no more.
In addition to the breach of Covid protocols, Bamalli is also set to answer for illicit drugs found in the apartment he lived in. This was discovered by the Thai authorities and so much effort has been put to suppress the news because of the damage it would do to Zazzau Emirate Council. Let us not forget that last year, his brother, Mansur Bamalli, the Magajin Garin Zazzau, got detained in Thailand as he went on a mission to smooth things over. Luckily for him, he was cleared, being an employee of the Nigerian Embassy in Morocco.
And with Abba Kyari, the disgraced supercop now singing, Bamalli is panicking and going around seeking protection because he has heard from credible sources that he has been mentioned. And it is not surprising considering the common knowledge of his use of drugs and also the number of Nigerians that are currently imprisoned in Thailand for drug-related offenses.
2.3. PRINCE OF ZAZZAU: THE MENACE OF AHMED NUHU BAMALLI
When the late Nuhu Bamalli was writing derogatory articles and defamatory statements on Zazzau Emirate and in particular, Emir Muhammadu Aminu and later on, Emir Shehu Idris, he definitely did not imagine it would come back to haunt his family. This is further proof that whatever you do, good or bad, will inevitably get back to you in some way and in most cases, tenfold.
Keen observers of the happenings in Zaria since the emergence of Ahmed Bamalli as Emir are often treated to articles and exposés of Bamalli, Hadiza Bala Usman, El-Rufa’i, Sanusi Lamido and their cronies by the Facebook page, Prince of Zazzau.
Even though sometimes the writer goes to the extreme in his assessment of these people, it paints a vivid picture of the general feeling of the people of Kaduna and Zaria, in particular. Here at the Fountain of Truth, we do not condone the use of vulgarity and scathing remarks. However, most of the things that have emanated from Prince of Zazzau have turned out to be true. It is indeed damning that onlookers from all over Nigeria are making a continued mockery of the situation in Zaria.
Lest we forget, it is common knowledge in Zaria that Ahmed Bamalli, in his bid to disrespect the late Emir Shehu, his father in-law, bought several phones for some youth and alongside Baraya, his vizier, taught those people the art of internet trolling and abuse of influential people. These people were in full flow during Bamalli’s beef with Galadiman Ruwan Zazzau, Ja’afaru Yahaya Sa’ad. Now, it is funny how almost all of those people he introduced to that shameful act are doing the same thing to him. If not for their request for anonymity, we would have named them.
Last year, so much energy and resources was sacrificed in order to know the real identity of the person operating the page of Prince of Zazzau. It got to a point where there was a confrontation between El-Rufa’i and Bamalli. Enquiries were made in places like Zimbabwe and South Africa but all to no avail.
2.4. EL-RUFA’I AND THE MYSTERY OF DADIYATA’S DISAPPEARANCE
The right to freedom of social expression remains farcical in Nigeria, and nothing points out to this more than the saddening case of Abubakar Idris, popular known as Dadiyata. Arriving home in Kaduna on August 2019, Dadiyata was forced into a car by yet to be identified armed men as he was trying to close his gate. His family would watch in horror as he was taken away and yet to be found again.
Anyone who was familiar with the politics of the time on social media, and especially in the North would have heard of Dadiyata. Known to be a fierce supporter of Kwankwaso’s red-cap wearing cult-like group, he was always criticizing the APC-led Government of Buhari and also Kaduna State Government led by El-Rufa’i. Personally, I faulted him for sometimes going overboard with his criticism, but the truth is, others have done it before him, and it will never stop. Politics is a dirty game in Nigeria, and it is hard not getting soaked up in the filth.
Since his disappearance, the Kaduna State Government has been muted towards appeals by the family and the public to provide any leads to his whereabouts. As expected, it has been shoved under the carpet. While the hope of his return continues to fade away with time, it is still fresh in the minds of people how dangerous it is messing with the likes of El-Rufa’i who threatens people just like that. There are known henchmen within his camp that he has empowered to carry out his dirty work. One good example is Haruna M. A. Inuwa, referred to as Idogo on social media. He was the Majority Leader for the Kaduna State House of Assembly before he was impeached last year. Everyone knows how with El-Rufa’i’s empowerment, the likes of Haruna Inuwa flaunt their illegally gotten wealth. It does not even stop there. Most of the time, he is seen with pimps and young men that one would in fact assume to be his children. From his forays into Kaduna State University, private universities in Abuja in search of innocent young girls to doing his master’s bidding. Surely, if it is these people that are going to be at the helm again in Kaduna, then we are all doomed. The rot will touch everyone of us.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD FOR THE PEOPLE OF KADUNA STATE AND ZARIA IN PARTICULAR?
2021 was quite an interesting year for the people of Kaduna. If anything, it showed glimpses of what the future has in store for the people of Zaria and those in Kaduna. It forecasted more unfair demolition of houses and places of businesses of the less-privileged in favour of the elites, and also a worsening insecurity with a Governor at the helm who only knows how to talk to the media in order to beef what he thinks is his Superman persona.
Just last week, El-Rufa’i’s nonchalance for the lives of people was on full-display after being cornered following the disastrous train attack by armed bandits and Boko Haram. In an interview, he threatened the Federal Government by saying that Governors would employ the service of mercenaries in a bid to tackle insecurity. He knew very well that most of the Governors are not even on good terms with him. He also knew that there would be no money to pay mercenaries given how he has been firing public officers during his tenure. He thought he could say that and get away with it like he did while campaigning for his office and APC at the Presidential Level in 2015. Then, he claimed that former President, Jonathan Goodluck was fully aware of the leaders of Boko Haram. In fact, he went as far as claiming that Goodluck was running the terrorist organization. And as expected, the ever hypocritical public fell for it and it led to the APC Administration’s victory. This time around, no one would fall for such dirty tactics.
It is worth noting that the previous Party in power failed woefully in almost all facets of governance. Even more pitiful for the PDP is the fact that someone as shady as El-Rufa’i is seen by some ignorant people as a revolutionary when most of the way he carried out things behind the scenes is nothing short of ugly. From inflated contracts to execute work by relatives, even sons, wives and allies, to unfair appointments of some “youth” upon advice of his morally-inept two drug-abusing sons, Bashir and Bello El-Rufa’i. This is even more glaring on Twitter when you’re presented first-hand with their unguarded utterances against people, threats to rape people’s mothers and also their whole circle of supporters and bootlickers in the mould of a timeless idiot like a certain Adamu Hayatu, an employee of the El-Rufa’i Administration, who had the temerity to insult an elder statesman like Dr. Hakeem Baba Ahmed.
Surely, the PDP under Ramalan Yero should be ashamed of itself for bringing these set of people into the limelight with their infamy. For most failings of the PDP under Yero, this El-Rufa’i government must be commended for doing better. More roads have been repaired, even though to the detriment of the Talaka who does not have a bike or car to ride. Youth inclusion has also increased significantly, even though it is mostly done by way of compensation for supporting El-Rufa’i. Children of allies have been shot to the upper echelons of power as a token of gratitude. And this is where El-Rufa’i has done the most damage. Facebook is often ridiculed for being a platform for the highest number of ignoramuses, but I beg to differ; at least it is a platform for the highest number of innocent ignoramuses. Twitter is where the belligerent ignoramuses reside. It is where you would find a seemingly-educated fellow with even a “blue-tick” on his profile making threads to tell people how El-Rufa’i has been a revolutionary, only to find out that he has ties with his children or relying on government funding or even someone who is seeking an appointment. Because of the previous PDP administration, so much carnage that this El-Rufa’i administration has done will be swept under the carpet. A clear case of a really bad evil chosen over the worse one.
Let us not forget some of the innocent workers who were laid-off. A significant number of them were indeed unfit and therefore deserving of sacking. But what El-Rufa’i should have done was provide them with proper training. The system that brought them was responsible for the disaster. They were only hired. As for those who are qualified and still affected, so much injustice has been done to them. There were so many times means of livelihood of the commoner was halted for long periods. For example, the Okada and Keke Napep ban which affected millions of people was so harsh that some people resorted to banditry and other crimes. How a Governor, in his right mind, would shut down a source of livelihood without providing for another is beyond me. With election year approaching, the muzzle on the mouth of the Talaka is off, and so the propaganda and unfair promises would begin again. It must never be forgotten that this has been aided by the most spineless set of Members of House of Representatives in the history of Kaduna States. All they are now accustomed to is getting their share of the loot from El-Rufa’i, with not even one of them standing up to the ridiculous bills that have been passed over the years.
Faced with the prospect of an embarrassing loss of the next Governorship election, the Kaduna faction of the APC is worried now more than ever and still unsure of the candidate to present forward. Zaria people are still enraged by El-Rufa’i’s choice of Ahmed Bamalli as Emir, who continues to disgrace the once respected seat. We’re talking about someone who has accusations of drug-peddling and other corrupt practices while he was on ambassadorial duty in Thailand. He still refuses to go for investigation despite reports of an invitation letter from the Thai Government. After Bamalli, who is proving to be a disaster, there is also El-Rufa’i’s unforgivable crime of empowering evil people in Kaduna State. A prime example is Isma’il Umaru Dikko, the Director-General of Kaduna State Urban Planning Development Agency (KASUPDA). This is a man who has on several occasions, threatened to demolish houses and places of businesses of people, citing his closeness to El-Rufa’i as a reason why he is untouchable. The Government has of course turned deaf ears to reports of KASUPDA agents making land acquisition deals behind the back door because they know how deep the rot is and those involved. Only last October, Dikko was arrested by the EFCC and later released but with little details as to why. If these are the kinds of people that would continue leading Kaduna State, then we are in for one hell of a ride to destruction and lawlessness.
After El-Rufa’i’s disgraceful snub by his once loving father, Buhari, at the Presidential Villa recently, everything points to show his irrelevance in politics now. Relying on the prediction of his and Sanusi Lamido’s Boka (Soothsayer) that one of them would emerge President, he is now bent on doing anything possible to destroy their already crumbling APC Party. It is predicted that anyone who has El-Rufa’i’s vote of confidence in the forthcoming election is destined to fail. With the appointment of Bamalli, he has in all sorts of ways put the final nail in his coffin and only time will tell. Now, all he does is have meetings with Osinbajo whose Presidential ambition is seemingly dead from the start. It was said that Osinbajo would pick him as his running mate, but that is just wishful thinking. The “Tradermoni” controversy alone is enough to bury Osinbajo. Even without that, he definitely knows better than to rely on El-Rufa’i, who does nothing better than betray the people that help him.
The signs are El-Rufa’i would be picking his stooge and incarnate, Muhammad Sani Dattijo as the ticket holder for the APC. There is bound to be serious trouble if that ends up happening. Uba Sani has declared his interest. The same with Bashir Jamoh, DG of NIMASA and a host of others. We all await 2022, and in shaa Allah, the best will emerge victorious, irrespective of party affiliation. But one mistake we should never make again is trusting El-Rufa’i and his cohorts.
It is now glaring, and more than ever that Nasir Ahmed El-Rufa’i, is nothing more than an “accidental public servant” as he calls himself in his autobiography, having no scintilla of emotion as to how he ought to serve the public he was elected to represent. Public servants are born to serve, and they do not emerge from mistakes, like the self-centered El-Rufa’i. And as expected, his relationship with Bamalli is getting more strained with time. Bamalli is often reported to be cursing El-Rufa’i over failure to provide him with adequate funding. Only time will tell how this absolute anathema would last.
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