In a way to smoother the interaction and business with the Chinese in Kano State, the Emir of Kano, Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II has approved the appointment and instalment of a Chinese man, Mr Mike Zhang, as a chief and leader of the growing Chinese community in the northern Nigerian state.
Mr Mike Zhang, a Chinese trader in Kano will be referred to as “Wakilin Yan China” after his turbaning on April 25 at the Emir’s palace in Kano. He will be responsible for the proper management of the Chinese community and he would act as their representative in the Kano royalty in times of need.
According to Premium Times, the announcement was made on Friday, April 19 by Sa’adatu Baba-Ahmad, spokesperson of the Kano Emirate. In his speech, Sa’adatu Baba-Ahmad explained that the instalment was very similar to that of ‘Sarkin Inyamurai’, chief of Igbo residents in Kano and ‘Sarkin Yarabawa’, chief of Yoruba residents in Kano and was a move to establish a peaceful coexistence between non-indigenes and their host.
Sa’adatu Baba-Ahmad went on to add that the appointment and future instalment of Mr Mike Zhang was necessary due to the rapid increase of Chinese businessmen in Kano who did not have proper representation and trading union. The rise in Chinese traders has caused several conflicts between the Chinese and Kano traders and this is a problem the Emir wants to solve to prevent a more complicated situation in the near future.
While this is not the first time a foreigner from another country will be given such a position by the Emir, the selection of a Chinese chief still comes with mixed feelings for several people as the Chinese have been accused of slowly taking over the continent.
In the past, the Emir has appointed a Yemeni, a Libyan and an Arab as chiefs for various reasons in Kano.