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Kaduna Community Elders Request Gov. Sani To Reinstate Disposed Paramount Ruler By El-Rufai


His Highness, Brig. General Iliya Aliyu Yammah, rtd., the deposed traditional ruler of the Arak chiefdom in Kaduna State’s Sanga Local Government Area, has been requested to be reinstated by NUMANA Community Development Organization, NCDO, in a letter to the state governor, Uba Sani.

It should be recalled that the Kaduna State Government, led by Malam Nasir Ahmed el-Rufai, announced the removal of the paramount ruler in a statement on Monday, May 22, 2023, through the Commissioner for Local Government, Umma Ahmad.

However, the community made a plea to the new governor of the state to look into the situation that prompted his predecessor’s action in a statement released on Wednesday, congratulating him on his election victory and smooth swearing-in as the Executive Governor of Kaduna State.

It also appealed that all the outstanding salaries of the royal father and his staff be paid.

In the statement by Comrade Ahmed Manzo,
Acting President, Numana Community Development Organization,NCDO, the community observed that the action of el-Rufai was “in bad faith,not fair and a witch-hunt which was clad with false allegations.”

It read:”The residents of Arak Chiefdom in Sanga Local Government Area of Kaduna State have expressed shock and displeasure over the recent deposition of our traditional ruler, His Highness Brig. General Iliya Aliyu Yammah (Rtd), by the former governor of the State, Malam Nasir Ahmed el-Rufa’i.

“To us, the deposition of our paramount ruler by the Malam Nasir el-Rufai led-government was in bad faith, not fair and a witch-hunt which was clad with false allegations.

“While congratulating Dr Uba Sani for his victory at the polls and the successful swearing-in as the Executive Governor of Kaduna State, we, therefore, called on him to take a look at the issue and reinstate the deposed traditional ruler of Arak chiefdom, His Highness Brig. General Iliya Aliyu Yammah (Rtd).

“It would be recalled that in a statement on Monday, May 22, 2023, the Kaduna State Government through the Commissioner for Local Government, Umma Ahmad, announced the deposition of our paramount ruler.

“The reasons given for the deposition, according to the state government include, “an unacceptable response to a query by the state government over an unauthorised appointment of four district heads and his non-residence within his domain.”

“To us, these reasons are not good enough as the allegations were not properly investigated by the state government before arriving at such a harsh conclusion.

“We, therefore, appeal to the Governor of Kaduna State, Dr. Uba Sani, whom we know over time, to be fair-minded, to revisit the issue in an effort to unravel the truth in order to reinstate our Royal Father.”

Commenting on the alleged appointment of four district heads by the deposed traditional ruler, the community explained that:”To put the record straight, His Highness Brig. General Iliya Aliyu Yammah (Rtd), did not, at any time appoint four district heads in Arak Chiefdom.

“What happened was that, when Arak Chiefdom was created from Gwantu Chiefdom, only one district was left for the new chiefdom and without a district head.

“His Highness, in his wisdom, after a series of meetings with all the Ruling Houses (comprising ARAK, EGAR, JANDA, and MADA) and other critical stakeholders, verbally assigned a senior village head in each of the clans to oversee their respective areas and report to him. There were no benefits attached.

“This was done for ease of administration of the Chiefdom pending the appointment of substantive district heads by the state government.

“The then State Government under Malam Nasir el-Rufai, without proper investigation, misunderstood the action as a creation of new Districts and appointment of District heads by the Royal Father.”

It further read: “Prior to his installations on August 25, 2018, His Highness had a medical procedure in the USA in June 2018. After his discharge, he was referred to a hospital in Abuja for rehabilitation and post-surgery management which was for 3 times a week.

“During his installations and presentation of staff of office, the royal father made it known to Governor Nasir el-Rufai, that he cannot afford the bill of going to Abuja 3 times in a week and requested for a flexible working arrangement which the Governor graciously approved.

“Therefore, for the state government to turn and accuse the royal father of operating from Abuja outside the chiefdom is strange.

“Since his appointment as the Etum Numana, changed to Etum Gwantu and later to Etum Arak, His Highness has always been on top of all issues in the Chiefdom. No issue has ever escalated because of lack of attention by the Royal Father.

“Therefore, following the chain of events that happened during and after the installations of the Royal father in 2018, we are forced to conclude that the former governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir el-Rufai never had good intention for our royal father.

“It would be recalled that in 2018, Governor Nasir el-Rufai orally pronounced the status of His Highness as ETUM GWANTU instead of ETUM NUMANA as contained in his letter of appointment.

“Since after the oral change of the name of the Chiefdom from NUMANA to GWANTU CHIEFDOM no subsequent appointment letter was issued to the Royal Father as ETUM GWANTU.

In 2021, however, the Gwantu Chiefdom was split by the state government and Arak Chiefdom was created out of Gwantu Chiefdom with a 3rd Class status.

“Surprisingly, His Highness who is a 2nd class Chief was transferred and relocated to a 3rd class newly created ARAK Chiefdom. This is a clear violation of the extant laws.

“However, the Royal Father did not protest the unusual transfer. He immediately assumed duty in the new Arak Chiefdom as directed.

“This is a very strange development that has never occurred in the history of African Traditional Council. This, to us, was the beginning of the victimization of our highly respected royal father by the Nasir el-Rufai-led administration.

“To worsen the situation, since the creation of Arak Chiefdom in 2022, the salary of the royal father and all palace workers were withheld up to date without explanation. His Highness has been running the palace with his personal resources.

“We, therefore, appeal to Governor Uba Sani to use his good offices and correct the errors made by his predecessor by reinstating our royal father who is still loved by all residents of Arak Chiefdom.

“We also appeal that all the outstanding salaries of the royal father and his staff be paid.”