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Only ‘Hausa men’ allowed to contest Nigerian presidency without certificate? No, headline false

The headline of an article on Exclusive103 claims Nigeria’s supreme court has ruled that men from the Hausa community don’t need an academic qualification to become president. 

The November 2019 report continues to circulate online. One widely shared post of the report on Facebook was spotted using CrowdTangle, a content discovery and social analytics tool.

The article seems to have been lifted from the Daily Post. But the headline has been changed from “Buhari does not need certificate to be president – Supreme Court” to “Hausa men don’t need certificate to be president – Supreme Court”. 

The Daily Post had reported on the supreme court’s November 2019 dismissal of a case brought by Atiku Abubakar, the losing candidate in Nigeria’s February 2019 presidential election, against current president Muhammadu Buhari.

Abubakar and his Peoples Democratic Party had appealed the election tribunal ruling that upheld Buhari’s election for a second term.

No reference to ‘Hausa men’ in ruling


The court’s widely reported ruling held that Buhari was qualified to contest the presidential election and didn’t have to submit his academic credentials to the Independent National Electoral Commission, as Abubakar and the PDP had claimed.

It also ruled that Nigeria’s constitution did not require a presidential candidate to hold a secondary school certificate. Schooling up to secondary level was sufficient.

The ruling made no reference to any community – Hausa-speakers, or men. The constitutional requirement covers all Nigerians. 

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