Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai has again come under legal battle for allegedly taking the wrong decision on outlawing a group with population of over 25 million, which is over the size of Nigeria’s most populous state.
Counsel to the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), Barrister Alexander U. Ajodo is challenging his proscription of the group in the Federal High Court Kaduna.
Speaking to newsmen outside the court after the matter came for mention on Monday January 15, 2018, Barrister Ajodo said the governor lacked the powers to amend Nigeria’s constitution from the government house.
“It doesn’t lay with the Kaduna State Government to determine if the IMN is legal or not. It is a matter of fundamental human rights to worship, which is enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution.
“The Nigerian Constitution supersedes any law by any state government or its House of Assembly,” he stressed.
He explained that their right to worship is fundamental and can only a competent court of jurisdiction can serve as an arbiter on the matter.
Earlier in the court, he prayed that the matter is speedily entertained, so that the continuous harassment of the group by government and security personnel will end
The counsel to the first five respondents, Deputy Director of Public Prosecution of Kaduna State, M D. Joseph, appealed to the court to file their affidavit on the matter even though it was late.
The court, presided over by Justice Shuaibu granted his plea but informed he would be charged default fees for filing out of time for number of days of default.
The matter was adjourned to February 8, 2018 for hearing.
The first respondent in the matter is Kaduna State Government, second, Governor Nasir el-Rufai, third, Honourable Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice Kaduna State, fourth, Commissioner of Police Kaduna State, fifth, Director DSS Kaduna State, sixth, Director General DSS Abuja, seventh, Inspector General of Police and eight respondent is the Chief of Army Staff.
This piece first appeared in the New Nigerian Newspaper of Monday 15th January, of 2018