Wide Angle

Nigeria : Morocco’s bid to join ECOWAS supported by the Emir of Kano

In Nigeria, Morocco’s opponents continue campaigning against its admission to ECOWAS. Nevertheless, the kingdom now has the support of one of the most influential figures in the country : the Emir of Kano, a follower of the Tariqa Tijania and a former governor of the Nigerian Central Bank.

King Mohammed VI shaking hands with the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari during his last visit to Nigeria./Ph DR
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A month before the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) summit, scheduled for December 16 in Lome, Togo, Morocco’s opponents in Nigeria continue campaigning against the Kingdom’s bid to join the regional economic organization.

This time, they are attending a meeting with the House Foreign Affairs Committee to discuss the consequences of such integration, says the Vanguard, an online newspaper based in Abuja.

In an alarmist tone, Nigeria's former director general (DG) of the Nigeria Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Bola Akinterinwa, warned the Nigerian Federal Government to «quickly checkmate such an entry as it will speed up disintegration of the Nigerian state».

He argued saying that the kingdom is «one of the most corrupt nations in the world going by the recent corruption index account», referring to a report conducted by Transparency International France. However, in the latest ranking set by the NGO, Morocco was ranked 90th among 176 countries, while Nigeria was at the bottom of the list, positioned 136th.

The Emir of Kano supports the Moroccan request

Bola was not the only one to reject morocco’s request to be part of the ECOWAS. Femi Falana, a Nigerian activist and lawyer indicated that the Nigerian economy would be affected by the admission of Rabat to the Economic Community of West African States. The Same thing applies to the vice president of the Association of retired diplomats.

Fortunately, in Nigeria, voices against Morocco are not the only ones out there. Muhammadu Sanusi II, the Emir of Kano, a predominantly Muslim Sunni region, supports the Moroccan demand. Considered as one of the most influential personalities in the country, he said in an interview conducted by the African Report, a Nigerian magazine, that «the accession of Morocco to ECOWAS will be beneficial for Morocco and the countries of West Africa».

In addition to his religious authority, the emir also has a financial power. Under the presidency of Jonathan Goodluck, he was the governor of the Central Bank. It is without counting that this follower of the brotherhood Tijania approves particularly the projects of green energy launched by King Mohammed VI.

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