A travel agent, Masu’d Muazu, has dragged the Chairman of the National
Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Abdullahi Muhammad, before a
Federal High Court in Abuja for an alleged unlawful stay in office.
Muazu, Chairman, Muntazam Travel Agency, Kano, instituted the case in
a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/935/2019 filed on behalf of the plaintiff by
a lawyer, Ibrahim Alhassan.
Also joined in the suit is the Secretary to the Government of the
Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, and the Attorney General of the
Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami.
it would be recalled that Muhammad and NAHCON’s Board members were, in
May, granted six months’ tenure of office elongation by President
Muhammadu Buhari at the expiration of their second and final tenure of
The Kano-based travel agency’s operator, who instituted the suit,
prayed the court to declare as unlawful and unconstitutional the
extension of tenure of office for the beneficiaries.
He urged the court to hold that the presidential action violated
Section 171 of the 1999 and Section 5 of the National Hajj Commission
Muazu, who is the plaintiff, also sought court’s declaration that the
continued stay in office of Mr Muhammad “after the expiration of his
second tenure of office is illegal, unlawful and unconstitutional.”
He asked the court to determine whether by the combine provisions of
Section 171 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
1999 (as amended) and Section 5(1) of the National Hajj Commission of
Nigeria (Establishment) Act, 2006, the president has the power to
elongate the tenure of Muhammad beyond 2nd terms in the office.
In an 11-paragraph affidavit in support of the originating summon, the
plaintiff averred that by Section 5 of the NAHCON Act 2006, Mr
Muhammad is to hold office as a member or chairman of the commission
for two terms of four years each.
He claimed that Muhammad had previously served one tenure of four
years as executive commissioner in charge of operations of the
commission from 2011 to 2015.
Muazu claimed that former President Goodluck Jonathan had granted
another four-year term to Mr Muhammad in May 2015 and that the tenure
finally lapsed on May 25.
Against the provisions of the law, the plaintiff asserted that the
SGF, via a memo of March 26 to President Buhari, sought the extension
of tenure of office for Muhammad.