Protesters shut FCT minister’s office over extension of council chairmen’s tenure | Dailytrust

Protesters shut FCT minister’s office over extension of council chairmen’s tenure

FCT Minister, Mohammed Bello
FCT Minister, Mohammed Bello
  • Challenge court decision, not minister – APC


Hundreds of residents of the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) have shut down the office of the FCT Minister, Malam Mohammed Bello, and the FCT Administration Secretariat over the inauguration of the new elected council chairmen and councillors.

The administration on Thursday announced the suspension of the inauguration, citing the ruling of an FCT High Court.

Our correspondent reports that one of the outgoing chairmen had approached the court to seek a tenure extension by one year under the new Electoral Act, 2022, which stipulates a four-year term for area council chairmen in the FCT, which the court granted.

In his reaction, the FCT minister had said as law-abiding administration, the FCTA would abide by the ruling.

But residents, in their hundreds, stormed the minister’s office on Friday and demanded the immediate swearing-in of the elected council officials.

One of the protesters, John Shaghayi, said such a court ruling could not stand, saying the new Electoral Act came to effect long after the outgoing chairmen were elected.

Daily Trust Saturday reports that the tenure of the outgoing council officials ought to end on Friday while the newly elected officials were to be inaugurated on the same day.

The new six area council chairmen and their 62 councillors were elected in February.

Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the FCT has asked people questioning the decision of the FCT Minister Muhammad Musa Bello to put off the inauguration of new area council administrators to contest the decision of the court and not resort to violence.

The party’s publicity secretary, Adaji Usman, while addressing journalists yesterday in Abuja said the minister did not err in his decision not to go ahead with the inauguration of new area council chairmen as he was only abiding by the law.

He said the decision also affected members of APC who should have been sworn in but the party could do nothing because it is important that the court order was followed.

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