The Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari has given reasons why he appointed the All Progressives Congress (APC) national chairmanship aspirant, Alhaji Saliu Mustapha, as the new Turaki of Ilorin.
The Chairman of the Kwara Traditional Council said Mustapha got his honorary title owing to his huge investments and uncommon acts of philanthropy in the Ilorin emirate over the last decade.
The Emir stated this on Tuesday when Mustapha led a high powered delegation of prominent Ilorin sons and daughters to the Palace on a Thank You visit after the conferment of the coveted title.
“He (Mustapha) is someone that everybody knows in the Emirate. He is someone who spends virtually all that he has got for the development of the Emirate and beyond.
“He is also trying his best to propagate Islam. It is people like him that are deserving of traditional titles, and that is why he has been so conferred,” the first class traditional ruler said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Turaki of Ilorin was a title previously held by the Sarakis, an influential political family in Kwara.
The late Olusola Saraki, father of the immediate past president of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, once held the title before he was elevated to the position of Waziri.
His son, Bukola Saraki, who is also a former governor of the state and Senate president, stepped into his father’s shoes and held the title between 2006 and 2018.
The younger Saraki was later turbaned as the Waziri, succeeding his father for the second time.
Findings revealed that Mustapha is the youngest to ever hold the title at the age of 48.
Meanwhile, tributes and accolades have continued to pour in after the announcement of the new title.
The former director-general of the National Broadcasting Commission, Mr Modibbo Kawu, in an interview with the newsmen after the visit posited that the title is a very important one and it is a recognition of Mustapha’s contributions to the development of the city over the last couple of years.
“I must say that the new Turaki is a very young man, but a young man with a tremendous sense of responsibility.
“Over the past three to four years, he has played a lot of roles in terms of contributing to community development efforts,” Kawu said.
For Justice Idris Abdullahi-Haroon, the former state Grand Khadi, Sharia Court of Appeal, it is a well-deserved honour.
“It is an honour done to the city and Gambari especially. It is a manifestation of Allah’s guidance in his Royal Highness,” he said.
The jurist, however, urged Mustapha to continue to emulate previous holders of the title who contributed selflessly to the community.
“He must continue to touch Ilorin and whatever this city needs to promote its course,” says Haroon.
A former dean of the University of Ilorin Postgraduate School, Prof. Lanre Badmus, said the new title would pave the way for Mustapha both at the national and international spaces.
“I feel extremely happy for this honour because it is done to the right person at the right time. Turaki is a quality title. He is the right peg in a round hole.”
“It is going to open opportunities for him at the national and international levels,” Badmus said.
However, the don advised residents to cooperate with the new Turaki and be patient with him in discharge of his duties.
Also, during the thanksgiving, Mustapha appreciated the Emir and the Emirate Council for finding him worthy of the title.
“I am very thankful to the Emir and the people of Ilorin for the honour,” he declared.
Mustapha advised illustrious sons and daughters of Ilorin in Diaspora to continue praying for a peaceful coexistence among the people.