Photo: from left Vice President Kashim Shattima . Sultan Sa’ad Abubakar ll and Sokoto Governor Ahmed Aliyu
By A. I, Sokoto
The visit of Vice President Senator Kashim Shattima to Sokoto state on Friday was perceived by many as a reconciliatory visit rather than the Sallah (Eid) homage he claimed it to be.
Speaking at the Sultan Palace, Shattima stated that he was in Sokoto to convey the Sallah greetings and well wishes of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to the Sultan.
Accompanied by the Governors of Sokoto and Borno states, Ahmed Aliyu and Babagana Zulum, as well as the leader of APC in the state, Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko, among others, Shattima advised Governor Aliyu to maintain a good relationship with the palace and Wamakko.
“Don’t allow anything to come between you and the Sultan and between you and Senator Wamakko,” he said.
There has been a rumored rift between the new Governor and the Sultan, which can be traced back to the election period.
It was alleged that the Sultan not only supported the candidate of the then ruling party in the state, PDP, Sa’idu Umar Ubandoma, but also directed other traditional rulers in the state to ensure the victory of the candidate in their domains.
“One of the traditional rulers told me that they were summoned by the Sultan, who directed them to ensure the victory of PDP in the state,” a resident of the state, who requested anonymity, told Rural Post.
Their rift deepened when, on Sallah day, Governor Aliyu kept the Sultan waiting at the palace in anticipation of the former’s Sallah homage.
It has been a tradition in the state that after every Eid prayer, the sitting Governor, after observing two-unit Eid prayers at the Fakon Idi praying ground with the Sultan and his counselors, would visit the palace for Hawan Sallah and homage.
Rural Post learned that the Governor left the palace immediately after Hawan Sallah without paying the traditional Sallah homage to the monarch.
“The monarch had delivered his speech to the mammoth crowd that witnessed the Hawan Sallah, and he quickly went down to his palace to receive the Governor.
“It was later revealed to him that the Governor and his entourage had left the palace, which he couldn’t believe because it is a long-standing tradition,” an eyewitness account said.
The Vice President visited the state on the third day of the Sallah celebration, which was the day the Sultan was supposed to pay a Sallah homage to the Governor at the Government House.
All efforts to obtain a reaction from the Governor proved abortive, as his media aide, Abubakar Bawa, could not be reached by phone at the time of filing this report.