It is no longer news that in Kaduna State two traditional stools have found themselves in a situation known in Latin as a sede vacante – an expression that means a position of authority is without an incumbent.
The first incident that rendered a traditional seat vacant in the state was the transition to the realm of the ancestors by the paramount ruler of the Adara Chiefdom of the Southern Kaduna sub-region – HRH Dr. Maiwada Raphael Galadima (Agom Adara III). Reports have it that he met his inevitable “ultimate-end” while returning from a meeting with His Excellency, the Executive Governor of the state, via the hands of kidnappers. Similarly, of recent the Almighty in His wisdom deemed it fit to call HRH Shehu Idris, the Emir of Zazzau, to receive eternal reward in the bliss of Al-jannah. My heartfelt condolence goes to all Nigerians, especially the people of Adara Chiefdom and the Zazzau Emirate.
Upon the death of HRH Shehu Idris, the governor took to his various social media platforms to express his grief over the demise of the late monarch. El-rufa’i, going by the evidence of his posts on Facebook, is not taking the matter of the appointment of a new emir with any iota of levity on his part. He has camped himself in the Kaduna Archives, studying the history of Zazzau, selection process of emirs and the leadership principles laid down by the founding fathers of the Sokoto Caliphate. It is expected that before the year runs out, another illustrious son of Zazzau would be placed on the throne of his forebears to the glory of Allah (SWA).
The diligent act of Mallam has earned him the opposite of the credit he deserves by social media vuvzuzelas — with the noise more prominent among people of Southern Kaduna extraction. The crux of their dissatisfaction is that nearly two years after the demise of the late head of the Adara Traditional State, His Excellency has yet to appoint another worthy son of Adara land to sit on the seat of his ancestors.
The Kaduna State Government, per the then Special Assistant to the governor, spoke glowingly of Maiwada, who they described as “a man of peace, a traditional ruler who consistently made positive contributions for the peace and tranquillity of his Chiefdom and the entire State.” The death of such an ideal individual and a leader par excellence is no usual event. It was of the death of his kind that Shakespeare pontificated that the heavens blaze forth in agony.
His burial, as witnessed by people of this age was not a regular one; it brought the world to the little-known town of Kachia. In similar vein, the appointment of his successor should not be in a rapid and haphazard manner. The delay in naming a successor is a deliberate ploy to honour the late ruler and to get people not to forget him in a hurry. Since he was unable to make the heavens blaze at his death, the governor must do all he can to, at least, keep his memory and legacy evergreen. Moreover, the continued vacancy in the royal house will serve as a reminder to the people of how their chief was abducted and used for shooting practice by his abductors with neither provocation nor lawful justification. Is there any better way to keep his memories evergreen than this? This accounts for the delay they are experiencing in the appointment of a successor.
Sources close to the government, informed me that being from the area himself, His Excellency does not want to rush the appointment of a new leader that will provoke the gods of the land to visit the land of his ancestors with a ruthless genre of madness that makes people to take arms against another as it happened constantly during the reign of a particular Agom Adara. Considering the importance of the task placed on him, he deemed it necessary to go beyond the study of literature — as he is doing in the Zazzau case at the moment — in reaching the most important decision on whose buttocks the stool fits perfectly. Since the death of the monarch, he has been engaging the oracles, priests, witches and village-people of the land in a series of fruitful deliberations to determine the next monarch.
I am baffled by the queries raised over Hail-rufai’s delay in appointing a new head for the Adara people. We tend to forget so soon that he is the governor. He is slightly taller than the law, as he has proven several times and we have seen from some of his actions and inactions. He has the license to do as he pleases without anyone questioning the exercise of his discretions, even in matters that adversely affect the welfare of the people. I hold as an immutable truth that the governor can do no wrong. He is Hail-Rufai, he can choose to enthrone and refuse to enthrone. Who wan try Mai-rusau?
It is true and in tandem with the notion of equality that, “What is good for the goose is good for the gander”, but it is also true that “the patient dog eats the juiciest bone”. While it is not too out of place for the people of Adara Chiefdom to demand that the matter of the appointment of a leader for their revered traditional institution be treated as a matter of urgency as it is being done to the Zazzau Emirate, they should also understand that His Excellency is doing everything within his powers to appoint a leader after his own heart.
To the people of Adara Chiefdom, I like to say, “learn to be calming down” and also learn to trust Gwamna Hail-Rufai. He has never failed, he will never fail, and he will do what he says he will do. It is scriptural that they that wait upon their lord shall renew their strength; shall run and not be weary; they shall mount up with wings like an eagle; they shall walk and not faint.