The recent interview granted the press by Distinguished Senator Ahmad Maccido as published by some national dailies has excited controversy least expected against the respected traditional institution especially the Sultanate. The whole contents of the interview was (an attempt to ) rubbish of the institution by a scion to the throne who unfortunately descended to irresponsible link to political vagaries which portends dangerous vilification by political actors.
The Sultanate bestrides wide range of influences that stretch from Sokoto to Ilorin and down to Adamawa in the Islamic hegemony of Shehu Usman Dan Fodiyo. It is, therefore, foolhardy and preposterous for a senator to claim political representation of such vast areas because of personal ambition. Senator Ahmad Maccido’s interview in every material perspective portrays intent to drag the Sultanate into divisive politics of this country. Islamic scholars that are of different political shades should debunk this dangerous trend. The Sultanate is the custodian of Islamic religious rites and canopy of peace, unity and piety or every upright value to every muslim, and indeed Nigerians.
In consonance with this avowed commitment and obligation to neutrality from politics the Sultanate Council has issued a statement against political vituperations as contained in Senator Ahmad Maccido’s interview. The venerated Council has distanced itself from every claim of the senator as purportedly representing the Council at the national assembly. The content of Senator Maccido’s interview appeared as a representation of the institution as he repeatedly and disillusionarily pictures himself as the Sultanate at the national assembly.
Moreover, the interview in its context exposes the puerility of the management of the issue at stake – capacity and capability comparison with Governor Wamakko. This is false pretence and should be disregarded. He is simply a politician in his own right.
But, the reality is Senator Maccido’s credentials in Sokoto State are fast waning into insignificance. After his first tenure in the Senate his constituency (Sokoto Central) became disenchanted with his performance and wanted him replaced. The animosity was even fueled from his family circle who saw him as political liability.
It was the intervention of Governor Aliyu Wamakko that saved his exit from political relevance. Governor Wamakko came to his rescue in due deference to late Sultan Muhammadu Maccdo (his father) who to date memorably commands enormous awe and high regard of Sokoto people, including the nostalgic friendship that existed between him and Governor Wamakko.
The current campaign of calumny by Senator Maccido has become one of those betrayals that dot our political landscape. Freedom of association is our constitutionally guaranteed right, but this right does not confer impunity or unreasonable behaviours and utterances in its exercise. Moreover, the right does not in any way accede to falsehood or irresponsible scampering to land a platform for external aid, in deceit. Of course, falsehood is inherent in assumption of vain or disproportionate umbrella such as the claim to the root of the Sultanate as alibi for political relevance. However, Senator Maccido is an heir apparent to the Sultanate, but that is no political legitimacy. The institution is insulated from politics, and the Council has reaffirmed it in its recent press statement.
A careful perusal of the interview reveals a politician that is yet to grasp the scope of the act of politics. There is nowhere our Distinguished Senator mentioned his scorecard to the people that elected him. In fact, the insinuation is preeminent in Sokoto that he is serving himself in Abuja with occasional face show in Sokoto in the manner of the content of the interview he granted – son of the Caliphate. Governor Wamakko continued to bolster him, but time is now up and there must be a change to provide active leadership and representation that shall be people oriented.
It is indeed ridiculous to precipitate comparison between active and inactive personalities. The interview was mainly orchestrated as latitude to scathe Governor Wamakko. The project is a dismal failure because Governor Wamakko has left indelible mark in the sands of Sokoto State development history. His scorecard is monumental and all encompassing. He has touched the lives of millions of not only Sokoto citizens, but also other Nigerians that came his way.
His education policy ensured that every Nigerian child enjoys right to unfettered access to education. Thus he abolished discriminatory school fees in all schools across Sokoto State. He remains the only governor that pays WAEC and NECO examinations fees for every eligible Nigerian candidate in Sokoto. He pushed the quest for education to unprecedented level by providing necessary structures and motivational dynamics, established new schools and capped it all by institution of a functional university.
The compassion of Governor Wamakko is unassailable. He positively affected lives of the less privileged including the disabled that receive monthly stipend for their upkeep. He has not discriminated against any interest or victimized political opponents in his overall welfare package, including the Ramadan Fast feeding programme which he introduced and nurtured to date.
Governor Wamakko executed vital projects that addressed the poverty level of the State through provision of critical infrastructure viz: township and rural roads, water and electricity supplies, housing; encouraged greater food production through agriculture (construction of dams for irrigation, creation of grazing reserves,institution of veterinary hospitals across the state, distribution of farm inputs and loans to farmers etc), the health sector receives a big boost through well articulated health care delivery system; and empowerment of traders through revolving loan that raises commercial activities of the State. He also through the skills acquisition programme economically empowered the youth to small scale businesses as a way of employment generation and economic growth of the society. He has also in cooperation with the traditional institution ensured peaceful co-existence (security) among citizens of Sokoto State. Peace is a panacea to sustainable development as quite often expounded by Sultan Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar.
These are the templates of good governance provided by Governor Wamakko. They are issues prominent in deciding political relevance, and of course, marketability of a candidate to the electorate.
Governor Wamakko’s profile is steadily on ascendancy, and certainly Sokoto people are still roundly behind him for any future political declaration. It is an assured smooth sail waiting for time to manifest.
Sokoto Network Group
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