There is anxiety in Niger State as kingmakers have fixed Sunday for the election of the seventh Sarkin Sudan of Kontagora.
This was contained in a long list of 47 contestants signed by the Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Alhaji Shehu Yusuf Galadima, sighted on Saturday.
- PODCAST: Finances In Marriage: Who Pays For What?
- States Agitating For Direct VAT Collection Joking – Masari
The list includes the 48-year-old current Sarkin Wushishi, from Wushishi Royal House, Shehu Ibrahim Abubakar.
Daily Trust had reported that no fewer than 45 aspirants picked the nomination form before the deadline on Friday.
Concerns have, however, mounted over the high number of applicants for the vacant stool.
But the police in Niger State said they had deployed adequate security in the town to forestall any breakdown of law and order because of various interests.
The Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Wasiu Abiodun, told Daily Trust on Sunday that the command was on top of the situation.
Abiodun said, “Security arrangements have been put in place to forestall any form of breach of peace before, during and after the exercise, while all parties involved are enjoined to play by the rules towards a hitch free selection process.”
Also, an Associate Professor of History and International Studies, Department of History and International Studies at Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State, Salau Mohammad Lawal, doused the apprehension over the selection exercise.
He attributed the high number of contestants to increasing level of awareness among people to participate in the promotion and preservation of their cultural heritage.
“Having this large number of contestants for the 7th Sarkin Sudan of Kontagora portends that people are now becoming more interested in their culture; people want to protect and promote their inheritance so that the way they inherited from their forebearers, others should also inherit from them.
“So, there is nothing wrong in having this large number of contestants; it is a very good development.
“In contesting for a traditional title like this, there are clear cut criteria that make one eligible. One, you must be a prince from paternal side of parents, two you must be knowledgeable in both Islamic and Western education, because this day, the two have to go together; and three, you must be somebody who is credible, somebody who associates with people, somebody that is diplomatic; somebody who is acceptable to the entire society. So, what the kingmakers need to do is to follow the criteria.”
Lawal also advised the kingmakers to consider what contestants have done for the society; and the value they would add to the traditional system.