President Buhari leaves behind a divided, broken and battered nation

Rights group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has kicked against the appointment of Ahmed Halilu, elder brother to the First Lady, Aisha Buhari, as the Managing Director of Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company, NSPMC Plc.

Buhari had reportedly approved the appointment of Halilu to head the company in an acting capacity following the resignation of Abbas Masanawa on May 16.

In addition to printing the banknotes and the postal orders of Nigeria, the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Plc also prints some electoral materials for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The company, also referred to as The MINT, was established in 1963 by the Nigerian government in partnership with De La Rue of the UK and is under the Central Bank of Nigeria.

It began full operation in 1965, producing currency notes and coins for the CBN as well as a wide range of security documents for the government, commercial banks, and blue-chip companies, among others.

It was learnt that the President approved the appointment after the recommendation of the governor of the Central Bank Godwin Emefiele, who serves as the NSPMC board chairman.

Halilu has over 23 years of experience in the Banking industry having worked with African International Bank Limited, AIB and Zenith Bank Plc.

He was a participant in Senior Executive Course 39, 2017 of the National Institute for Policy & Strategic Studies in Kuru, Jos.

Halilu holds a Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture B. (Agric), a master’s degree in Business Administration as well a master’s degree in International Affairs & Diplomacy all from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.

He is also a member of the Nigerian Institute of Management, NIM.

Reacting to the appointment, however, HURIWA said that President Muhammadu Buhari may have breached the oath of office of the President of Nigeria if the report is true.

Quoting a media report, the rights group said Alhaji Halilu, an elder brother to First Lady Aisha Buhari had headed the company in an acting capacity following the resignation of Abbas Masanawa on May 16, 2022.

HURIWA, in the statement endorsed by the National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, said in as much as it is not in doubt whether Halilu is competent or qualified to hold such an esteemed and professionally inclined position given his illustrious academic and working background, but the issue is the ethics of the action of the President and its legality bearing in mind the fuller import of the constitutionally protected oath of office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The group wondered whether Buhari’s decision was impeded by his private affiliations to the person of Halilu, who is reportedly related to him by marriage as the biological brother of his only known wife and the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

HURIWA said the appointment might border on nepotism, maintaining that it violates the Federal Character principles of the Federal Republic of Nigeria enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria of 1999 as amended.

Citing some sections of the Constitution, HURIWA called on Buhari to revoke the appointment which may have violated the Constitution, or the National Assembly to investigate the legality or otherwise of the appointment if this is not challenged then before May 29th, 2023.

“We may wake up to find out that Mr.President has appointed one of his foreign educated kids such as his son, Yusuf as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria since he can appoint his brother-in-law as Head of the institution that prints and mints the national currency of Nigeria,” the rights group said


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