Nasir El-Rufai: One man, many storms


Nasir El-Rufai: One man, many storms


By John Eche


For the embattled Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, the current NBA dis-invitation ruckus is one of many storms on the path of one man.


Since coming to public prominence as Director-General of the Bureau for Public Enterprises, BPE, during the Olusegun Obasanjo presidency, the maverick Governor of Kaduna State has confronted with one storm or the other.


After the BPE years, he had moved on to serve as Minister of the Federal Capital Territory and even there it was not a quiet time.


The resultant years of the Yar Adua presidency brought a new wave of storms for El-Rufai who took flight during this season away from the country but the end of his season in exile came following the death of Yar Adua when he returned to the country and joined in efforts to help General Muhammadu Buhari become President in 2011.


By 2015 when Buhari was elected President, El-Rufai was similarly sworn in as Governor of Kaduna State and became one of the front-line drivers of the new administration.


One of the more significant storms that El-Rufai has become embroiled in in the course of his governing Kaduna State has to do with the state action against the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN sect, Mallam Ibrahim El Zakzaky, and his followers. Also referred to as the Shiite Movement in Nigeria, a clash between followers of the movement and the security services led to what has been described as a brutal clampdown on the sect that led to the death of hundreds of victims, the destruction of property and the maiming of many other victims.


Another significant storm has involved what has come to be seen as the continued and now incessant attacks by suspected Fulani herdsmen on Southern Kaduna communities, with the government of Kaduna state under El-Rufai’s watch been accused of taking sides against the Southern Kaduna people. Myriad attempts by El-Rufai and some others to explain that the crisis is indeed deeper and broader have not been believed by many.


Now El-Rufai is in the eye of the storm once again with the Nigerian Bar Association’s dis-invitation of the Governor from coming to address its forthcoming conference after thousands of lawyers protested his choice as Guest Speaker. It remains to be seen how this latest episode of what has come to register as a continuing string of many other El-Rufai storms would eventually pan out.

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