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Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) Raises Concerns over Serving NYSC Member’s Ministerial Appointment

August 24, 2023

Photo Credit: Premium Times


The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has voiced its concerns about the appropriateness and legality of appointing Hannatu Musawa, a current National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member, as a Federal Minister.

HURIWA specifically questioned the Nigerian Senate’s decision to allow Hannatu Musawa’s ministerial nomination to proceed without thorough scrutiny, given the controversy surrounding her NYSC certificate. According to the civil rights advocacy group, Musawa reportedly left her NYSC service in Ebonyi State a few years ago, only to express interest in completing it later. She was subsequently mobilized in 2023 and assigned to a law firm in Abuja, where she currently serves as a Corps member. It was during this period that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu nominated her for a ministerial position.

HURIWA expressed concern about the extent of the Department of State Services (DSS) scrutiny, which failed to disclose that Musawa was an active NYSC member. Section 13 of the National Youth Service Corps Act stipulates that any Nigerian graduate below the age of 30 who fails to participate in the mandatory one-year service has committed an offense and is liable to a fine or imprisonment.

Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, the National Coordinator of HURIWA, stated that Musawa, who has been inaugurated as a Minister of Arts, is still an active NYSC member in Wuse II, Abuja, in 2023. HURIWA criticized the Senate for allowing Musawa to “take a bow and go” during the inauguration process without thoroughly addressing her academic qualifications or the NYSC certificate controversy.

HURIWA revealed that credible sources within the NYSC confirmed Musawa’s active status as a Youth Corps member. They also provided details of her NYSC posting, including the service code and placement information.

The advocacy group recalled that in 2020, the Senate had rejected Musawa’s nomination for a position in the National Pension Commission (PENCOM) due to her failure to submit her NYSC certificate. This recent appointment has drawn parallels to the past incident and raised questions about consistency in standards.

HURIWA condemned Musawa for allegedly distributing crispy N1,000 notes to local Hausa musicians at an event celebrating her ministerial appointment, asserting that such actions could be considered illegal and against currency regulations.

The group urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to investigate, possibly arrest, and prosecute Musawa for violating currency laws. They also called on the National Youth Service Corps to require Musawa to decide between completing her NYSC service or discontinuing it to focus on her ministerial role.

Source: Forefront Naija


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