Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar vowed last week that he will continue to contest for the country’s presidency as long as his health permits him.
The same week, the former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, was reinstated as the Emir of Kano four years after his dethronement by former governor Abdullahi Ganduje’s administration.
These and three other stories we tracked dominated public discourse in the country last week.
1. Atiku eyes presidency in 2027
On May 23, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate in the 2023 election declared his intention to vie for the country’s highest political office in three years.
Atiku stated this during an interview on the Hausa Service of the Voice of America in Abuja.
He also hinted at a merger between the PDP and other opposition parties before the next general election.
He said: “I will keep contesting again and again as long as I am alive and healthy.
“Even the former US President Abraham Lincoln contested seven times before finally winning.”
Why it matters
The remark speaks to the former vice president’s desperation to rule the country despite his failure in the last five elections held in the country.
Atiku’s remark is expected to raise the country’s political temperature in the days ahead as interest groups in the South-East, in particular, are unrelenting in their push for the presidency after coming so close in 2023.
It however remained to be seen if the PDP will fall to this booby trap by handing its presidential ticket to the former Customs officer just like it did in 2022 because of his deep pocket.
2. Sanusi returns as Emir of Kano
The former CBN Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi returned as the Emir of Kano on May 23.
The Emir, who spoke after he received the letter of reinstatement from the Kano State governor, Abba Yusuf, said his return to the throne was the will of God.
He said: “The Arabians used to say that in everything we witness, there is a lesson that shows us that God is there. Whatever happens to an individual is preordained by Allah, and for those who are sensible enough, it’s a lesson.
“God is one, and whatever He does, nobody can change, and what He doesn’t do, nobody can.
“About 10 years ago, in this same place, former Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso gave me my appointment letter as the Emir of Kano. Today, after 10 years, I am here again receiving a reappointment letter from Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf.”
Why it matters
The Kano State government’s dethronement of Aminu Ado Bayero indicates Governor Yusuf’s readiness to remove his predecessor’s imprints in the state.
The tussle over the Emir seat is unhealthy for Kano State because of its volatile nature, therefore President Bola Tinubu must quickly step in to prevent the already heated polity from leading to chaos and anarchy capable of undermining the Northern region as a whole.
3. Court orders forfeiture of N830bn, $4.7m linked to Emefiele
Justice Yellim Bogoro of the Federal High Court, Lagos, on May 25 ordered the interim forfeiture of $4,719,054, N830, 875,611 cash, and several properties believed to belong to the former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele.
The judge gave the order following a motion ex parte filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
READ ALSO:QuickRead: Kukah’s take on Nigeria’s insecurity. Four other stories we tracked and why they matter
The commission had in the motion prayed for an interim order forfeiting to the Federal Government of Nigeria the funds held in the accounts listed in the accounts linked to Emefiele.
It read: “An interim order forfeiting to the Federal Government of Nigeria Properties provided in 2nd Schedule ‘B’, which are proceeds of unlawful activities. An order directing the publication in any national newspaper, the interim order under reliefs 1-2 above for anyone interested in the properties and funds sought to be forfeited to appear before this Honourable Court to show cause within 14 days why the final order of forfeiture of the said properties and funds should not be made in favour of the Federal Government of Nigeria.”
Why it matters
The ruling is a sad reminder that bad behavior will not go unpunished, no matter how long it takes.
The development nevertheless reinforces the call for stiffer punishment for individuals who abused their positions to serve as a deterrent to others.
4. Northern Elders ‘damning verdict’ on Tinubu’s govt
A member of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), Prof. Usman Yusuf, on May 19 delivered a scathing assessment of the Federal Government’s performance in the last one year.
Yusuf, a former Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), spoke on Channels Television’s programme, Sunday Politics.
He argued that the administration has exacerbated hopelessness among Nigerians.
Yusuf said: “People have lost hope… Renewed Hope has turned into hopelessness.”
Why it matters
Yusuf has indeed struck the right cord in his assessment of the Tinubu administration in the face of challenges facing Nigerians under its watch.
With the growing resentment in Nigeria over the hardship occasioned by the government’s policies, there are fears, even among the die-hard All Progressives Congress (APC) supporters that if elections are to take place today, the president and his party will be kicked out of power by the overstretched citizens.
Instead of basking in the euphoria of his victory one year after the election, the president and his team need to sit up and fashion a way out of the current mess for Nigeria to avoid pushing the citizens to anger.
5. Bandits kill seven, abduct 150 in Niger
Gunmen suspected to be bandits on May 24 killed seven persons and abducted 150 others in Kuchi village, Munya local government area of Niger State.
The victims include four members of the joint security taskforce in the area and three members of the community.
The Chairman of Munya LGA, Mal Aminu Najume, confirmed the attack to journalists.
He said: “These gunmen, numbering over 300, moved from house to house and dispossessed our people of their belongings. They abducted about 150 villagers, including women, and took them away in the rain.”
“For over three hours, they operated with no reinforcement from anywhere. They outnumbered the Joint Security Taskforce and succeeded in killing four of them, including some villagers.”
Why it matters
The latest attack in Niger and others across Nigeria reinforce the belief about the collapse of the country’s security architecture.
The onus, therefore, lies on the Federal Government and its security agencies to quickly resolve this problem and halt Nigeria’s descent into a failed state.
By Hammed Shobiye

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