Yesterday, Emir of Kano Alhaji Ado Bayero and his two sonsarrived back in Kano through Malam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA), after five weeks of medical sojourn in the United Kingdom following the attack by gunmen on his convoy on January 19, 2013.
The respected monarch landed at the international wing of the airport 7 pm, accompanied by his two sons, Ciroman Kano Alhaji Sanusi Ado Bayero and Turakin Kano Alhaji Nasiru Ado Bayero, aboard a Nigeria Air Force plane.
It would be recalled that the Emir's convoy came under attack by a group of gunmen as it pulled out of Gandu quarters after the Emir had attended a Qur'anic graduation ceremony and commissioning of an Islamiyya school. Six persons were killed in the attack, including three of his royal aides and an interim local government chairman, while the Emir's two sons and about a dozen other people sustained injuries.
The 83-year-old monarch and his injured children were flown out of the country to Britain a day after the incident for 'medical attention'.
Soon after their arrival yesterday, Bayero stepped down the aircraft and walked about 50 metres to enter his waiting car, which was surrounded by a sizeable crowd that had gathered to welcome him.
The Emir was first received on arrival by Kano Emirate Council members, comprising senior councillors and led by the Wamban Kano Alhaji Abbas Sanusi. Other traditional title holders who were at hand to welcome him included district and ward heads in the state. Kano State government delegation to the airport was led by the commissioner for special duties, retired Brig Gen Dambazau. Other dignitaries included the Senior Special Adviser to the Kano State governor on Emirate Council, Alhaji Tijjani Mailafiya Sanka, chairman Kantin Kwari Traders Association, Alhaji Liti Kulkul, representative of Sheikh Ishaq Rabi'u, Alhaji Nafi'u Ishaq Rabi'u and many others.
It was gathered that Bayero took off from London earlier in the day around 12pm. There was elaborate security presence at the VIP section of the Kano International Airport even before the monarch's arrival, with Joint Task Force (JTF) personnel, backed by Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs), providing security.
It was also gathered that less than 500 people were at the airport to welcome the Emir because his return was kept secret. Dozens of palace guards had arrived MAKIA hours before the Emir's plane touched down.
The traditional ruler, who was dressed in white flowing gown and a brown royal top, was later escorted to his palace by APCs, soldiers and policemen, royal household members and members of the public. The royal trumpeters continued to entertain him along the way.
At his palace, a mammoth crowd had converged, yelling out praises and expressing joy for the return of the revered monarch. After he was escorted inside, adjourning streets quickly turned into jubilation theatres. Motorcycle riders and car drivers displayed various stunts. The Emir's musketeers intermittently fired ceremonial shots to announce his return.
Special Adviser to the governor on emirate matters, Mailafiya, expressed happiness at the monarch's return, saying the he arrived in good health: "We are extremely happy because he is our leader and spiritual head."