You have no right to license preachers, court tells Kaduna

A Kaduna State High Court on Wednesday ruled that the state had no right to screen and issue licences to preachers in the state.

But Justice Hajaratu Gwadah ruled that the state government had the right to regulate religious activities in the state.

The judgement was delivered in suit filed by the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, challenging the constitutionality of a  bill by the Kaduna State Government seeking the regulation of religious activities in the state.

The Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria in 2016 challenged the constitutionality of the bill.

The PFN,  among other prayers, asked the court for a declaration that the court to stop the bill.

However, Justice Gwadah said Sections 6 and 9 of the bill which seeks to screen and licence preachers “violates the constitutional rights of the applicant”.

In his reaction to the judgment, counsel for the PFN, Sunny Akanni, said he was satisfied with the judgment.

He said, “Our argument is that you cannot licence pastors because they already licences. In Christianity, not only ordained pastors preach. Every Christian is commanded to preach the gospel.”

Counsel for the state government, Sanusi Usman, however, said he was not dissatisfied with the judgment.