Sanusi Lamido Sanusi

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Muhammadu Sanusi II
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi 01.png
Muhammadu Sanusi II in 2017 at SOAS
Emir of Kano
Reign8 June 2014 – present
Predecessor Ado Bayero
Born (1961-07-31) 31 July 1961 (age 58)
Kano, Kano State, Nigeria
SpouseSadiya Ado Bayero, Maryam,Rakiya and Sa'ada
House Gidan Rumfa, Kano
FatherAmbassador Aminu Sanusi, Chiroman Kano
MotherHajiya Hafsat Aminu
Religion Islam
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria
In office
3 June 2009 20 February 2014
President Umaru Yar'Adua
Goodluck Jonathan
Preceded by Charles Soludo
Succeeded by Sarah Alade

Muhammadu Sanusi II (CON, born Sanusi Lamido Sanusi 31 July 1961) is the 14th Emir of Kano, who was crowned on 8 June 2014 after the death of his granduncle Ado Bayero (25 July 1930–6 June 2014). Emir Sanusi was a banker and former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria. He was appointed on 3 June 2009 for a five-year term, but was suspended from office by the then President of Nigeria Goodluck Jonathan on 20 February 2014 after Sanusi accused the government of a $20 billion fraud in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) [1] .

Nigeria became an independent country on 1 October 1960 and in 1963 became the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The republic instituted two orders of merit: the Order of the Niger and the Order of the Federal Republic.

Kano Emirate Council Northern Nigerian Emirate in Kano Emirate

The Kano Emirate is a traditional state in Northern Nigeria with headquarters in the city of Kano, capital of the modern Kano State. Preceded by the Emirate of Kano the Council was formed in 1903 after the British pacification of the Sokoto Caliphate. Ado Bayero became the emir in 1963, reigning for 50 years until his death in 2014, he oversaw the transformation of the Emirate under Nigeria's federal constitution that subjects Northern Nigeria's Emirates to political leaders. The emir of Kano serves as the leader of the Tijaniyya sufi order in Nigeria, historically the second most important Muslim position in Nigeria after the Sultan of Sokoto who is the leader of the more populous Qadiriyya sufi order in Nigeria. On 8 June 2014, former Nigerian central banker Muhammadu Sanusi II was selected to succeed Bayero as Emir of Kano.

Alhaji Dr. Ado Abdullahi Bayero was the Emir of Kano in Nigeria, from 1963 to his death. Bayero was seen as one of Nigeria's most prominent and revered Muslim leaders who was a successful businessman and had worked as a banker, police officer, MP and diplomat. He was a former ambassador to Senegal. He was the son of Abdullahi Bayero son of Muhammad Abbas. Ado Bayero was the 13th Fulani emir since the Fulani War of Usman dan Fodio, when the Fulani took over the Hausa city-states. He was one of the strongest and most powerful emirs in the history of the Hausa land. He was renowned for his abundant wealth, maintained by means of stock market investments and large-scale agricultural entrepreneurship both at home and abroad.


Sanusi during the WEF 2013 Sanusi Lamido Sanusi World Economic Forum 2013.jpg
Sanusi during the WEF 2013

Sanusi is the grandson of Muhammadu Sanusi I, the 11th Fulani Emir of Kano. [2] A banker and Fulani nobleman, he is also a respected Islamic scholar. [3] Sanusi received two awards from The Banker magazine: Central Bank Governor of the Year (worldwide) and Central Bank Governor of the Year for Africa. [4]

Emir Muhammadu was the Emir of Kano from 1954-1963. He was the eldest son of Emir Abdullahi Bayero. He was a powerful Emir that had substantial influence in the colonial Northern Nigeria. He hosted the Queen Elizabeth II when she visited Kano in 1956. The power tussle between him and his distant cousin Ahmadu Bello the Sardauna of Sokoto is believed to have resulted in his dethronement and confinement in Azare 1963. His grandson, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria is now the current emir of Kano. Sanusi belonged to the reformed Tijaniyya order of Ibrahim Niass

<i>The Banker</i> English-language monthly international financial affairs publication owned by The Financial Times Ltd

The Banker is a British English-language monthly international financial affairs publication owned by The Financial Times Ltd. and edited in London, United Kingdom. The magazine was first published in January 1926 through founding Editor, Brendan Bracken of the Financial News, who went on to become the chairman of the Financial Times from 1945-1958.

Time magazine listed him on its list of the 100 most influential people of 2011. [5] In 2013, Sanusi was honoured at the third Global Islamic Finance Awards (GIFA) in Dubai for his advocacy in promoting Islamic banking and finance during his tenure as governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria. He received the Global Leadership in Islamic Finance Award 2015 as the fifth GIFA Laureate, following Tun Abdullah Badawi (2011), HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah (2012), Shaukat Aziz (2013) and Nursultan Nazarbayev (2014).

Time is an American weekly news magazine and news website published in New York City. It was founded in 1923 and originally run by Henry Luce. A European edition is published in London and also covers the Middle East, Africa, and, since 2003, Latin America. An Asian edition is based in Hong Kong. The South Pacific edition, which covers Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands, is based in Sydney. In December 2008, Time discontinued publishing a Canadian advertiser edition.

Global Islamic Finance Awards (GIFA) are one of the most prestigious awards in Islamic banking and finance. Other prestigious awards are Islamic Development Bank Prize in Islamic Banking and Finance and The Royal Award For Islamic Finance, founded by the government of Malaysia. GIFA was founded by Edbiz Corporation as part of its advocacy for Islamic banking and finance. Since its inception in 2011, GIFA has emerged as the Number One Islamic finance awards programme in the world.

Dubai Metropolis in United Arab Emirates

Dubai is the largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the capital of the Emirate of Dubai.

Sanusi was born into the Fulani Torobe (Sullubawa) clan of Kano on 31 July 1961. [6] As the grandson of Muhammadu Sunusi, he was automatically a member of the Sullubawa clan of the Torobe Fulani. His father, Ambassador Aminu Sanusi, was a career diplomat who was the Nigerian Ambassador to Belgium, China and Canada and the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


Sanusi received his primary education at St. Anne’s Catholic Primary School in Kakuri, Kaduna from 1967 to 1972, where he obtained his First School Leaving Certificate. He then attended King's College, Lagos, where he graduated in 1977. Sanusi was offered provisional admission to Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) in Zaria, where he obtained a bachelor's degree in economics in 1981. He received a master's degree in economics from the school in 1983, and taught there until 1985. Sanusi studied at the International University of Africa in Khartoum, receiving a degree in Islamic law. He was posted to Gongola State (now Adamawa and Taraba States) for his mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) service. [7]

Kaduna Place in Kaduna State, Nigeria

Kaduna is the state capital of Kaduna State in north-western Nigeria, on the Kaduna River. It is a trade centre and a major transportation hub for the surrounding agricultural areas, with its rail and road junction. The population of Kaduna was at 760,084 as of the 2006 Nigerian census.

Kings College, Lagos State school in Lagos, Nigeria

King's College, Lagos is a secondary school in Lagos, Lagos State, Nigeria. It was founded on 20 September 1909 with 10 students on its original site at Lagos Island, adjacent to Tafawa Balewa Square. The school admits male students only although historically some female HSC students were admitted before the establishment of Queen's College Lagos, popularly known as King's College's sister school. King's College conducts exams for the West African School-Leaving Certificate and the National Examinations Council.

Ahmadu Bello University Public university in Zaria, Nigeria

Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) is a federal government research university in Zaria, Kaduna State Nigeria. ABU was founded on 4 October 1962, as the University of Northern Nigeria.


In 1985, Sanusi was hired by Icon Limited (a subsidiary of Morgan Guaranty Trust) and Barings Bank. He joined the United Bank for Africa in 1997, working in the bank’s credit and risk-management division, and rose to the position of general manager. In September 2005, Sanusi became a board member of the First Bank of Nigeria as an executive director in charge of risk and management control. He was appointed Group Managing Director (CEO) in January 2009. At this time, Sanusi was chairman of Kakawa Discount House (where he was a board member of FBN Bank). He was the first person from northern Nigeria to be appointed CEO of FBN. On 1 June 2009, during the presidency of Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, Sanusi was nominated governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria; his appointment was confirmed by the Nigerian Senate on 3 June 2009, during a global financial crisis. [7] He is recognized in the banking industry for his contribution to a risk-management culture in Nigerian banking. [8] First Bank is Nigeria's oldest bank, and one of Africa's largest financial institutions. [9] Sanusi was the first northern Nigerian CEO in First Bank history. [10]

Barings Bank English merchant bank

Barings Bank was a British merchant bank based in London, and the world's second oldest merchant bank. It was founded in 1762 by Francis Baring, a British-born member of the German-British Baring family of merchants and bankers.

First Bank of Nigeria

First Bank of Nigeria, sometimes referred to as FirstBank, is a Nigerian multinational bank and financial services company headquartered in Lagos. It is the biggest bank in Nigeria by total deposits and gross earnings. It operates a network of over 750 business locations across Africa, the United Kingdom and representative offices in Abu Dhabi, Beijing and Johannesburg set up to capture trade-related business between geographies. The bank specialises in retail banking and has the largest retail client base in Nigeria. In 2015, The Asian Banker awarded FirstBank the Best Retail Bank in Nigeria award for the fifth consecutive year.

Umaru Musa YarAdua President of Nigeria

Umaru Musa Yar'Adua was the 13th president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He was governor of Katsina State in northern Nigeria from 29 May,1999 to 28 May,2007. He was declared the winner of the controversial Nigerian presidential election held on 21 April,2007, and was sworn in on 29 May,2007. He was a member of the People's Democratic Party (PDP). In 2009, Yar'Adua left for Saudi Arabia to receive treatment for pericarditis. He returned to Nigeria on 24 February,2010, where he died on 5 May.

Central Bank governor

President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua nominated Sanusi governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria on 1 June 2009. His appointment was confirmed by the Senate on 3 June 2009, in the midst of a global financial crisis. [11] Analysts believed that Sanusi's tempered mien would be a counterpoise to the more-aloof disposition of his predecessor, Charles Chukwuma Soludo. [12] Based on his past record, it seemed probable that he would impose stricter controls. [13]

In August 2009, Sanusi led the central bank in rescuing Afribank, Intercontinental Bank, Union Bank, Oceanic Bank and Finbank with 400 billion of public money and dismissing their chief executives. [14] In September 2009, he said that 15 of the present 24 Nigerian banks might survive reform. [15]

In a December 2009 Financial Times interview, Sanusi said that he had initiated extensive reforms since taking office (known as the "Sanusi tsunami"). Some believed that he had a vendetta against some CEOs, and others pointed to proof of mismanagement of funds by some CEOs (most notably Cecelia Ibru) as justification for the steps he implemented. According to Sanusi, there was no choice but to attack the powerful and interrelated vested interests who were exploiting the financial system. He expressed appreciation of support from the president, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the finance minister and others. [16]

In January 2010, Sanusi said that the banks would only want to give credit to Nigeria’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) if the government paid adequate attention to infrastructure. [17] He admitted that since 2005, the central bank had not conducted routine examinations of the 14 banks allocated to it under an arrangement with the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC). [18] Abubakar Nagona, president of Integrated Development and Investment Service (IDIS, a venture capital investment company), urged Sanusi to "not be cowed and succumb to undue pressure from operators of the same sector he is striving to bring sanity to." [19] At a February 2010 conference on Nigerian banking, Sanusi described his blueprint for reforming the Nigerian financial system. The blueprint was built around four pillars: enhancing the quality of banks, establishing financial stability, enabling healthy financial sector evolution and ensuring that the financial sector contributes to the real economy. [20] Later that month, Sanusi said that the crash in the capital market was due to financial illiteracy on the part of Nigerian investors. [21] The Banker recognized him as the 2010 Central Bank Governor of the Year, citing his radical anti-corruption campaign aimed at saving 24 banks on the brink of collapse and pressing for the managers involved in the most blatant cases of corruption to be charged and (in the case of two senior bankers) imprisoned. [4] Sanusi has spoken at a number of distinguished events, including the February 2012 Warwick Economics Summit (where he spoke about banking reforms in Nigeria and their impact on the economy). [22]

Sharia authority

During his banking career, Sanusi contributed to the debate over Sharia law. In 1997, he received a degree in Sharia and Islamic Studies from the African International University in Khartoum. [2] In the September 2000 Weekly Trust, Sanusi noted the problem of reconciling "belief in the universal and eternal applicability of the Shariah with the need for a wholesale adoption of its historically specific interpretation to meet the requirements of a particular milieu." He added, "Even a cursory student of Islamic history knows that all the trappings of gender inequality present in the Muslim society have socio-economic and cultural, as opposed to religious roots." [23]

At a 2000 Kaduna conference, Sanusi delivered a lecture on Islamic economics entitled "Institutional Framework of Zakat: Dimension and Implications". He argued that although the collection of zakat is a state responsibility, it may be the responsibility of the Nigerian government rather than the emirs of Northern Nigeria. At a July 2001 Abuja seminar, he spoke about "Basic Needs and Redistributive Justice in Islam – The Panacea to Poverty in Nigeria". Sanusi adopted the mainstream position that zakat is an instrument for redistributing income, arguing in favor of giving the role of redistribution to the government. [24]

In October 2002 he published a paper entitled "The Hudhood Punishments in Northern Nigeria: A Muslim Criticism", and presented "The Shari'a Debate and the Construction of a 'Muslim' Identity in Northern Nigeria: A Critical Perspective" at a seminar at the University of Bayreuth in July 2003. In August, Sanusi presented "Democracy, Rights and Islam: Theory, Epistemology and the Quest for Synthesis" at an international conference on Shari'ah Penal and Family Law in Nigeria and in the Muslim World: A Rights-Based Approach in Abuja. [25]

Sanusi's position has two underlying themes: Islam is concerned with delivering justice and should not be a tool for self-seeking political agendas, and the Wahhabist rhetoric of fundamentalists counters genuine Muslim interests. [26] He explains that Sharia is not divine but religious, and is neither uniform nor unchanging. [27]

Fuel-subsidy removal

Economists have favoured the removal of subsidies, [28] and Sanusi has spoken on numerous occasions in favor of removing the subsidy. [29] He cites the high level of corruption engendered by the practice, the inefficiency of subsidizing consumption instead of production (leading to slower economic growth), and the fact that the government borrows money to finance the subsidy—taxing future generations so present Nigerians can consume more fuel.

Sanusi, other economists and development practitioners [28] also note that the subsidy is biased in favor of the middle and upper classes, who use most of the fuel. Additionally, some people purchase subsidized gas in Nigeria to resell it in other West African countries.

Funds diversion

According to a 2013 TEDx talk by Sanusi, Nigeria lost a billion dollars a month to diversion of funds under the government of Goodluck Jonathan. [30] [31] The PBS segment quoted American and British officials that former petroleum minister Diezani Alison-Madueke might have organized a diversion of $6 billion (₦1.2 trillion) from the Nigerian treasury. Alison-Madueke was arrested in London on 2 October 2015. [32]

Sanusi believes that he was fired from the Central Bank of Nigeria because he went public with charges that $20 billion was missing from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) under Alison-Madueke's management. According to Alison-Madueke, Sanusi made the allegations as part of her lack of aid to get him appointed as president of the African Development Bank (AfDB). [33]

Emir of Kano

Sanusi before the Durbar in September 2016 Emir of Kano on his throne 092016.jpg
Sanusi before the Durbar in September 2016

Sanusi was selected to succeed his granduncle, Ado Bayero, as the Emir of Kano on 8 June 2014. His appointment was controversial; some believed that it was a politically-motivated move to avoid fraud charges from his tenure as governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria. Many expected Bayero's son to succeed him as emir, and protested Sanusi's appointment. [34] He was crowned Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II on 9 June 2014, the 14th Emir of Kano [35] and leader of the Tijaniyya Sufi order (the second-most-important Muslim position in Nigeria after the Sultan of Sokoto, leader of the larger Qadiriyya Sufi order). [36] [37]

After Sanusi urged his followers to fight the Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram, the Kano Mosque (the seat of his emirate) was bombed in November 2014; 150 people were killed. [38] [39] In December 2014, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau accused him of deviating from Islam and threatened his life. [39] Sanusi replied that he is "safe with Allah", and likened Shekau’s comments (describing Sufis as unbelievers) to those of the heretical Islamic preacher Maitatsine. [40]

On Wednesday, 8 May 2019, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi's powers as Emir of Kano state has been watered down by the Governor of the State, Abdullahi Ganduje. This was following Ganduje's signing into law the creation of four new Emirates. The Emirates created are for Gaya, Bichi, Karaye, and Rano. According to the new bill, the Emir of Kano will only preside over 10 Local Government Areas of the 44 in the state. [41]

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Sarah Alade was the acting governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria during the suspension of Lamido Sanusi until his tenure ended. She was appointed to the post by President Goodluck Jonathan on 20 February 2014. Alade was appointed acting governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria from 20 February 2014 until the appointment of Godwin Emefiele. Prior to this time, she had served as deputy governor, Central Bank of Nigeria from 26 March 2007.

Politics of Northern Nigeria

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2014 Kano bombing

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Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
Born: 31 July 1961
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Ado Bayero
Emir of Kano
Succeeded by