Lamido Of Adamawa, The Nyakos And The Rest Of Us

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The traditional rulers (iyayen kasa) play the role of upholding the values and administering the affairs of their domain. They are saddle with the responsibilities of working with municipalities to identify the needs of their communities and be involved in shaping and participation of service delivery. They also play a role in disaster management and the promotion of indigenous knowledge system.

Traditional institutions also promote peace, foster cohesion and contribute to the political system of governance. Among other interventions, traditional rulers provide leadership in ensuring that societies utilised available land to increase agricultural output and enhance food security so as to alleviate the challenges of poverty, criminality and underdevelopment in the land.

Apparently, traditional leadership ties its pragmatic social responsibilities to the citizens with the notion of identity and moral responsibilities to their people. This essentially means the inter connectivities of people and the shared responsibility for each other in ways that would be of benefits to the overall development of the society.

The traditional institutions provide a sense of continuity and stability in an era of great change. They serve as intermediaries to ensure that change occur in an orderly and familiar way. Yet at the same time, they display impressive flexibility, adapting to meet the needs of the day in an effort to preserve or enhance their position within our communities.

If the above inference is correct, then the Lamido of Adamawa, Alhaji Muhammad Barkindo Mustafa was absolutely right to strip former governor of the state, Vice Admiral Murtala Nyako, and his son, Sen Abdul’Aziz Nyako of their traditional titles of Sarkin Yamma, and Sarkin Matasa respectively.

Our traditional rulers are the number one custodians of our norms and values, therefore we must defend each of them as our remaining shield from every mode of corruption. Whatever is dirty and sacrilegious must, of course, be weeded out of this great institutions.

The justifiable reason for the strip-off was said to be that the two title holders have been indicted by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC and were arraigned before a Court of Law for alleged corruption.

In any other society or state, this is an action that will be greeted with big commendations to the Emirate for displaying a great sense of discipline and good values. Not in my dear State, Adamawa, every good and progressive action will always be politicised to the detriment of decorum and morality.

Therefore, I wasn’t suprised when I started reading some funny posts and negative social media reactions to the strip-off of the Nyakos. The funniest being that Adamawa state governor, Senator Muhammadu Umar Jibrilla Bindow is behind the action. That’s so so unfair on Governor Bindow. He is sure smarter than that.

The way I see it, if tomorrow Governor Bindow is down with the same corruption charges and arraigned in a Court of Law, Lamido Mustapha will dish out the same sanction to the present governor as he just did to his predecessor. So, for God sake, what is all these fuss about?

The Adamawa State Emirate Council is one of the most respected and revered institutions in Nigeria. It has been a big symbol of justice, fairness and equity for generations – decades before Governor Bindow got into politics. It is highly disrespectful for anybody to think Bindow will break down the ethics of this institution and place a selfish influence.

Governor Nyako is presently not a good model for governance or traditional rule, and the last time I checked the Admiral brought that upon himself – not Governor Bindow not Lamido Mustapha. Politicians should be allowed to pay for their political actions and inactions devoid of selfish sentiments from the public. No corrupt politician should be allowed to have a title in our great institutions, not Nyako, not anyone.

And for how long will we continue to celebrate corruption and bad governance all in the name of politics? When will we learn to support the good in our traditional institions? For how long will we continue to blame Governor Bindow for every of Adamawa’s political problem?

This is a man that has sacrificed so much and has done so well to make Adamawa State a better place for all of us. And his progressive ideas and infrastructural innovation is there for all to see. So if we can’t at least appreciate him, we shouldnt drag him into the dirty muds of others.

The institution of traditional leaders and its procedures of governance is not only a simpler form of government, but also a more accessible. It is closer to the subjects than any other system of government.

Subjects have more direct access to their rulers, because they live in the same settlement and because any individual can approach the ruler, decision making is based on consensus, which creates greater harmony and unity. It is transparent and participatory because most people may attend palace gatherings and express their views directly, not through representatives.

Harmony and unity prevail because the interest of communal unit, rather than an individual or group of individual are pursued and expressed. So, traditional institutions like the Adamawa Emirate Council’s partnership is one best way of driving the economic shift of Adamawa state beyond politics.

We must therefore respect this great institution and it’s objective and progressive decisions. I rest my case.

Talle wrote in from Mubi and he can be reached on



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