The Court Rules: NYSC should not Force Female Corps Member to Wear Trousers

In a groundbreaking decision, the Federal high court has ordered the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to pay N5 million damages for violating the fundamental human right of a corps member.

A corps member filed a lawsuit against the NYSC, including its director Brigadier General Yesha'u Ahmed and State Coordinator, alleging that they infringed upon her religious rights by prohibiting her from wearing a skirt as part of the uniform.

However, the NYSC in response to the suit urged the court to dismiss the suit for lacking in merit.

In its verdict, the court ruled that the NYSC cannot compel female corps members to wear trousers. The court emphasized that the choice of wearing a skirt by female corps members as part of her official attire constitutes a fundamental aspect of her right to freedom of religion, as well as the freedom to practice and express it, as enshrined and guaranteed under Section 38 of the 1999Constitution (as amended).


Consequently, the court ordered the NYSC, its agents, or servants from further restraining, detaining, or subjecting any female member of the NYSC to harassment, embarrassment, or humiliation consequent upon the decision to wear a skirt as part of their official NYSC uniform. This injunction also prevents the enforcement of the NYSC Bye laws of 1999 or any subsequent versions in a manner that would penalize or discipline female members for choosing to wear skirts.