President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday visited the Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi II, in his palace in a bid to get the traditional ruler’s blessing for his re-election bid.
He was in the city in continuation of the Peoples Democratic Party’s presidential campaigns.
The relationship between the two became strained last year when the President suspended Sanusi as the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Jonathan had suspended Sanusi as the apex bank’s boss over what was described as financial recklessness and thereafter directed the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria to further investigate him.
Shortly after his suspension, however, Sanusi became the Emir of Kano following the death of the former occupant of the stool, Alhaji Ado Bayero.
There were unconfirmed reports then that the Presidency moved to ensure that Sanusi did not emerge as the Emir.
During the Wednesday visit, Jonathan congratulated Sanusi on his installation and condoled with him and the people of the emirate on Bayero’s demise.
He told the traditional ruler that he was in his palace to formally introduce himself, Vice President Namadi Sambo and other PDP candidates in the election.
“I am here to seek your royal blessing and to reassure the people of Kano that the PDP is totally committed to developing the country,” he told the monarch.
In his response, Sanusi thanked Jonathan for the visit and expressed the hope that his campaign in the state would be hitch-free.
He stressed the need for all office seekers to go about their campaigns without violence.
“Democracy is all about giving people the chance to make their choice and so, there is no need for violence,” he said.
Sanusi urged the people to accept the verdict after the election and rally around whoever emerged as the winner.
He also advised the Federal Government to intensify efforts aimed at ensuring security in all parts of the country before, during and after the elections.
Sanusi prayed for the emergence of leaders that would move the country forward.
Speaking at the Polo Ground venue of the campaign rally in Kano, the President said that was why his administration was committed to producing young entrepreneurs.
He said, “We have said that in those days when they said Nigeria was at par with other countries, but those countries overtook us and left us behind. That will no longer be acceptable by this present leadership.”
The Vice President, Namadi Sambo, told the supporters to ignore the religious campaign against Jonathan and the PDP, saying that as the vice president to Jonathan, nobody could claim to be a bigger Muslim than himself who observed all injunctions of Islam.
The Jigawa State Governor, Sule Lamido, who is the North-West zonal coordinator of the PDP presidential campaign, told the gathering that the All Progressives Congress government of Kano State was a government of deceit.
Recalling the achievements of a former Kano governor and Minister of Education, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, Lamido advised Kano people not give in to Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso’s false pretences but to vote for all PDP candidates.