A Truth in Time, a stage play that depicts the life and times of the 14th Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi, held on Saturday at the Muson Centre in Lagos, and had the audience glued to their seats all through.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the play produced by Duke of Shomolu Productions, was written by Ahmed Yerima and co-directed by Emmanuel Adejumo (Boy Sala).
NAN also reports that it is a two-day stage play holding simultaneously on Saturday and Sunday in Lagos and Abuja.
The 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 Dogorai (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 culture of the Fulani and other people of Northern Nigeria.
The man of the house, Dalihu, a retired palace guard (Dogorai) in a heated conversation with his wife Zainab, depicted the hostile relationship the couple had, as they both await the arrival of their son Shaibu, a palace guard.
The arrival of Shaibu, who had served the disposed Emir of Kano, was welcomed with joy; his father asked him if the rumours about the dethronement of the Emir was true, and what led to the dethronement.
Shaibu told him the armies took over the palace, and this made his blind father sad at the cruelty meted on the Emir.
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 more than an hour; the play talked about women abuse and the oath of silence.
Mr Sanusi was crowned June 8, 2014 and was dethroned March 9, 2020 by Gov. Abudullahi Ganduje due to his perceived criticism against government and some of its policy.
The play reiterates everything the emir stood for – equality, good governance and a better life for Nigerians, most especially women.
Babatunde Ali, the assistant Head Boy of Command Secondary School Ipaja, told NAN that he learnt that treating a girl-child with respect was an honourable thing to do as a man.
Adaeze Ndukwe, an SS 3 student of the school, told NAN that, “the moral of the stage play shows that the truth will always prevail no matter what, at the end of the day.”
Also speaking with NAN, Oluchukwu Ukoha, an SS 2 student, said that the incursion of politics into tradition and customs was counter-productive.
66-year-old Sanya Gold, a theater artiste, commended the cast and crew of the stage play.
“The actors were fantastic, the lines and the conversation was 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, told NAN that it was a privilege to be part of the production of the great Emir.
“It’s 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 a thunderous applause after the performance.