Buhari’s guests swell for Juma’at in Aso Rock

The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, was one of the dignitaries who, on Friday, joined President Muhammadu Buhari for the Juma’at service inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Others, who joined Buhari at the service, included the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Abdulazeez Yari of Zamfara State, and some top presidential aides.
The CJN arrived the Presidential Villa about the same time the prayer started and went straight into the mosque located behind the President’s office for the prayers.
Immediately after the prayers, Justice Mohammed left the premises straight from the mosque.
Yari, on his part, arrived early enough to join the President inside his office from where they both trekked to the mosque for the prayer.
They also returned to the President’s office together after the prayer.
A few minutes after, the governor emerged from the President’s office and left the premises.
None of them spoke with journalists after the service.
Our correspondent reports that the number of people participating in the Friday prayer has been increasing rapidly since June 26 when Buhari decided that he would no longer be attending the Juma’at service at the National Mosque, Abuja.
For the first few weeks, those who were joining the President for the prayers were mainly workers in the Presidential Villa and government officials.
As news spread, however, some people, especially politicians, started attending the service.
Because of the small nature of the mosque, worshipers now overflow to the forecourt of the Presidential Villa leading to the President’s office.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, had, in a statement, said Buhari decided to worship inside the Villa out of consideration for the hardships always imposed on members of the public by road closures during presidential movements.