Kano’s relapse into banditry (Daba) politics
• As Thugs Unleash Violence On Kwankwasiyya Members
• Kwankwasiyya Blames Police For Taking Sides
In what appears like the peak of political thuggery, followers of the former governor of Kano State, Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, also referred to as Kwankwasiyya were attacked during the traditional Kano Emir’s Hawan Daushe Sallah festivity.
The attack was perpetrated by persons who were sighted between the Emir’s palace and around vicinity of School for Arabic Studies, brandishing local weapons, like machetes, swords and the like.
The traditional Hawan Daushe is an annual event used to showcase the rich culture and tradition of the Kanawa and indeed Hausa people in general.
The presence of hundreds of Kwankwasiyya followers in their Red Caps, together with mostly white Kaftan, attracted some political opponents around.
Shitu Sani Marshal, a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), said: “Kwankwasiyya people should not have converged where they knew governor Ganduje would attend. That to me was an instigation.”
Marshal added that, as far as he was concerned, Ganduje would not, as number one man in the state, plan for violence. To him, “Kwankwasiyya men should be very cautions on how they attend such ceremonies. I am therefore calling on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to start punishing political thuggery.”
He called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene into Kano political crisis. “Since Kano is Buhari’s second home. He has overwhelming support from Kano. He should please come to our aid for the survival of healthy democracy.”
Midway into Hawan Daushe, before the governor left for the Emir’s palace from Government House, thugs started attacking Kwankwasiyya members with dangerous weapons. Many followers sustained various injuries.
Amongst the victims who sustained injuries were; the former Secretary to the state government, Engineer Rabi’u Sulaiman Bichi and two former commissioners under Kwankwaso, Dr Yunusa Adamu Dangwani and Yusuf Bello Dambatta.
A younger brother to former governor Kwankwaso, Yahaya Musa Kwankwaso was also alleged to have sustained serious injury. Immediately after the Hawan Daushe when Ganduje returned to Government House, from the Palace, the state Commissioner for Information, Youth and Culture, Muhammad Garba condemned the dastardly incident. Calling it a breach of peace.
Garba warned that the Daushe event should not be turned by disgruntled elements into a platform to foment trouble, after assuring that the state government was working with the Kano Emirate Council and other relevant security agencies, to ensure that incidents like that never happened again.
Two days after the violence, Kwankwasiyya leadership met at the residence of the former Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), who was also a former commissioner during Kwankwaso’s first term, Aminu Dabo and issued a more strongly worded statement, allegedly linking the attack to a legislator in the State House of Assembly.
In the release that was signed by Dr. Yusuf Adamu Dangwani, the group noted: “Kwankwasiyya ideolgy is premised on helping the less privileged in the society and working for the good of all irrespective of political, religious and ethnic leanings. Kwankwasiyya is known to also to be peaceful and hard working. They don’t instigate, perpetuate and tolerate criminality, as no society will develop under uncertainty.
“This ugly and unfortunate trend, if allowed to continue will undermine the relative peaceful co-existence the people are known to enjoy. It also has the tendency to create chaos and mistrust and subsequently expose political activities to what was obtained during the chaotic second republic. This situation is therefore condemnable.
“This selective security cover connivance with police officers in attacking and maiming innocent souls and groups shall not go unchecked. While we shall continue to refrain our teeming loyalists from taking the law into their own hands, we shall however, continue to pursue this issue to its logical conclusion, by ensuring that justice is seen to be done.”
The Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, also condemned the attacks, calling on politicians to control their supporters. Some civil society groups joined in condemning the violence, and promised to institute programmes to train politicians on tolerance. An emergency meeting was summoned by the Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) to map out strategies on how to de-escalate the reappearance of banditry (Daba) politicking in Kano.”
Rabi’u Shamma who signed the media statement after the CITAD meeting, assures that they would engage the media in sensitization programmes against political violence in the state and beyond.
They also revealed that they would engage other stakeholders, like the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Council of Ulama, Security Authorities, Resident Doctors, Hizbah etc., in a multi stakeholder approach in order to nip the crisis.
Sources close to Kwankwasiyya disclosed that the leadership was making arrangements to take up the matter legally. On Friday, six days after the incident, the Police at a press conference, led by Police Public Relations Officer, Kano Command, DSP Magaji Musa Majiya red the riot act to trouble makers.
It also attempted to place culpability when it said:”…the Kwankwasiyya faction of APC converged at Hasiya Bayero Hospital in thousands with their supporters drawn from Sokoto, Kogi other neighbouring states and various local government areas of Kano state, with the ulterior motives to disrupt the occasion organised by the Emirate Council.”
Not being a political gathering, the Police blamed Kwankwasiyya supporters for “…chanting “Ba Ma Yi”! “Ba Ma Yi”! Meaning we are not in support! We are not in support!
Majiya said the chanting “took place when the factional group sighted the convoy of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Kano State, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, approaching the venue of the occasion.”
In order avoid future occurrence, Majiya disclosed that a powerful team of Police Detectives headed by the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-charge of Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department, DCP Ahmed Muhammad Azare, has been inaugurated to immediately investigate the immediate and remote causes of the clash.