Kano Emirate tussle: Court fixes 13th June to rule on jurisdiction

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The Federal High Court sitting in Kano has fixed 13th June, 2024 to rule on whether it has jurisdiction or not to entertain the Kano Emirate tussle.

The court, presided over by Justice Abdullahi M. Liman adjourned to rule on the matter following a heated argument between counsels in the matter.

The applicant, Sarkin Dawaki Babba of the Kano Emirate, Aminu Babba Dan’Agundi had approached the Court seeking his fundamental human rights and that the court should restrain the respondents from enforcing, implementing and operationalizing the repealed law.

The respondents in the suit are Kano State Government as 1st respondent, Kano State House of Assembly (2nd), Speaker of Kano State House of Assembly (3rd), Attorney General of Kano State (4th), Kano Commissioner of Police (5th), Inspector General of Police, IGP (6th), NSCDC and DSS as 7th and 8th respondents respectively.

At the resumed hearing on Thursday, counsel to the applicant, M. S Waziri told the court that they have filed a written address dated June 6th, 2024.

“On the issue of jurisdiction, in compliance with the order of the court, we have filed a written address dated 6th June, 2024 and hereby adopt same and maintain that the court has jurisdiction to entertain the matter so long that it has issue of fundamental human rights.

“The applicant as a member of Kano emirate Kingmakers ought to have been involved in the reinstatement of the new emir.

“My lord, breach of fundamental rights has no timeline. I urge the court to proceed with the case,” Waziri said.

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Responding, counsel to the 1st and 4th respondents, Mahmoud Abubakar Magaji SAN urged the court to decline the jurisdiction to entertain the matter.

He argued that the law has gone through legislative processes, first, second and third reading and the order came only after the action was done and his client was only served on a Monday of the following week.

He therefore urged the court to decline to entertain the matter on the issue of jurisdiction.

“We filed a written address dated June 3 and filed June 6. In the constitution, only the Kano State House of Assembly has the authority and power to make law.

“The applicant is neither a member of the House of Assembly or the Commissioner for Chieftaincy Affairs. The applicant may not need to be consulted.”

On his part, counsel to the 2nd and 3rd respondents, Ibrahim Isah Wangida aligned himself with the submission of the 1st and 4th respondents arguing that the applicant cannot claim his rights was breached as the 2024 law was repealed and accented to before the applicant filed action.

“The 2019 Kano emirate council law which gave the power to the applicant at the time of filing his action was abolished so he ceased to be a kingmaker as of the time he filed the action because the governor has already accented to the law.”

Earlier, counsel to the 5th and 6th respondents, Sunday Ekwe told the court that they did not file any issue on jurisdiction because the duty of the police is to maintain peace and wait to carry out order of the Court.

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The Presiding Judge, Justice Liman however, adjourned the matter to 13th June, 2024 for ruling on jurisdiction.

The court proceeding was held amidst tight security of personnel which comprises of Police and DSS with their vehicles stationed to mount road block on the road leading to the court premises.

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