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“A Truth in Time” Emir Sanusi play goes on Lagos stage to rousing applause

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A Truth in Time, a play depicting the life and times of the 14th Emir of Kano State, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, was staged at the Muson Centre in Lagos on Saturday holding its audience spellbound for its duration.

The play, produced by the Duke of Shomolu Productions, had Prof. Ahmed Yerima as the playwright, while Emmanuel Adeejumo (Boy Sala) was co-director.

The two-day stage play was being held simultaneously on Saturday and Sunday in Lagos and Abuja.

The Lagos audience was a blend of both the young and old as selected students from Command Secondary School, Ipaja, Lagos, watched with excitement.

The play depicts the lives, drama and intrigues surrounding the dethronement of both Emir Sanusi I and his grandson, Emir Sanusi II, leaning heavily on the eyewitness account of the DogDogarai palace guards, who served both Emirs.

The three-cast stage play started with a couple whose marriage was in tatters. The first scene talked about insecurity and child marriage, and the culture of the Fulani and other people of Northern Nigeria.

It showed Dahiru, a retired palace guard in a heated conversation with his wife, Zainab, with the scene depicting the hostile relationship between the couple as they both await the arrival of their son, Shaibu, a palace guard.

The arrival of Shaibu, who had served the deposed Emir of Kano, was welcomed with joy and his father asked him if the rumours about the dethronement of the Emir were true, and what led to the dethronement.

Shaibu told him that security forces had taken over the palace which made his blind father sad at the cruelty meted on the Emir.

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His wife, however, said the cruelty meted on the Emir was the same treatment she got since her own father sold her to him as a young slave.

She suffered from Vesico-Vaginal Fistula (VVF), which made her husband treat her with disdain.

Shaibu told his father to respect women, saying if he ever liked the Emir, he would imbibe the good deeds of the Emir by speaking the truth and treating women with respect.

The three-cast actors held the audience spellbound for over an hour as they talked about women-abuse and the oath of silence.

Emir Sanusi 11 was crowned on June 8, 2014, and was dethroned on March 9, 2020, by Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje due to his perceived criticism of government and some of its policies.

The play reiterates everything the Emir stood for – equality, good governance and a better life for Nigerians, especially women.

Sanya Gold, a 66-year-old theater artiste, commended the cast and crew of the stage play.

“The actors were fantastic; the lines and the conversation were well scripted. I just want them to work on the lighting, aside from that, everything was top notch,” he said.

Victor Coker, who played the role of Shaibu, said it was a privilege to be part of the production of the great Emir.

“It is an honour to have been a part of this production; learning is continuous and I have picked up a thing or two from my director,” he said.

The crew got thunderous applause after the performance.

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