Ibrahim Dasuki, the 18th Sultan of Sokoto, has criticized the invasion of his home in Sokoto as unlawful because it is his property and not the property of his son, former National Security Adviser Sambo Dasuki.
The property is one of two that were invaded and searched last week by the State Security Service (SSS), the other being in Abuja.
The 94 year-old Dasuki, who was famously dethroned by General Sani Abacha’s military junta in 1996, spoke with the BBC Hausa Service in London on Monday. He emphasized that his home is different from that of the retired colonel.
The older Mr. Dasuki, who is receiving treatment in the United Kingdom, told the BBC that he received news of the standoff between his son and SSS with shock.
“I am surprised at 94 how security will enter my own house and entered my wives rooms because of my son. In all my life and experience I don’t know how you will invade someone’s house because of his son,” he declared. “We are different people. Yes, he is my own son, but his house is in Abuja while mine is in Sokoto. How can you do that to me? My other children have rights in my own house.”
He noted, however, that he has yet to obtain the details of the incident, but stressed that his son is nearly 60.
“He is on his own. Why will they invade my own house?” he asked.
In a statement last Sunday, the SSS explained that it undertook the exercise following receipt of credible intelligence that the former NSA planned to commit treasonable felony against Nigeria.
Spokesman Tony Opuiyo said the SSS had planned simultaneous searches on its two targets, but that the former NSA refused its men entry into his main residence despite being presented with a genuine and duly signed search warrant.
The former NSA, he said, used the military guards at his home to prevent the SSS operatives from performing their legitimate duty, creating a potentially dangerous situation.
“Please, recall that Sambo retired from the Army as a Colonel, and is therefore not entitled to have military guards, if not for the fact he was NSA,” he said. “Even as NSA, such guards should have been withdrawn after his removal as NSA since he would not have been entitled.”
The agency said that during the subsequent search, it recovered from Dasuki’s home sophisticated arms and ammunition, seven high caliber assault weapons, several magazines and military-related gears.
They also found 12 new vehicles that included five bullet-proof cars.