- Senator Mao Ohuabunwa has faulted President Buhari's letter to the Senate
- He said the president's letter was not clear as it does not expressly delegate responsibilities to the vice president
- President Buhari wrote, while I am away, the Vice President will coordinate the activities of the government
Mao Ohuabunwa, the Senator representing Abia-North at the National Assembly has faulted President Buhari's letter intimating the Senate of his medical trip abroad and his delegation of power to the vice president.
According to the senator, the president's letter is not clear as it does not expressly delegate responsibilities to the vice president to act as acting president but rather to coordinate the governance of the country.
Ohuabunwa had raised a point of order after President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, separately read a letter from President Buhari informing the legislature of his medical vacation.
The President in the letter wrote:
“In compliance with Section 145 (1) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), I wish to inform the distinguished Senate that I will be away for a scheduled medical follow-up with my doctors in London. The length of my stay will be determined by the doctor’s advice.
“While I am away, the Vice President will coordinate the activities of the government. Please accept, the distinguished Senate President, the assurances of my highest consideration.”
Ohuabunwa however faulted the letter as not naming Osinbajo as acting president and should be disregarded in entirety.
He said: “Whenever the President transmits to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives a written declaration that he is proceeding on vacation or that he is unable to discharge the functions of his office, until he transmits to them the written declaration to the contrary, such function shall be discharged by the Vice-President as Acting President.
“Mr. President, I don’t think in our Constitution we have anything like ‘coordinating president’ or ‘coordinating vice president.’ It is either you are vice president or you are acting president and any letter (on transfer of power) should be unambiguous and very clear. So, I am saying that this letter really does not convey anything because ‘coordinating’ has no space or any place in our Constitution.
“We have been having (receiving) letters like this in which he will tell us who is the acting president and we will know who to deal with as a Senate. This is the highest legislative body of any country and if you are sending us a letter, it should be direct, unambiguous. So, I am saying that this letter, for me, is not right and maybe it should be sent back.”
Meanwhile, Femi Fani Kayode has reacted to the development.
He described as dangerous the plan by some people to keep Professor Yemi Osinbajo away from the position as acting president in the absence of President Muhammadu Buhari.
President Buhari had left the country on Sunday, May 7 for medical treatment and the vice president was duly expected to replace him in acting capacity.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com in this video brings you how posters of President Buhari are all over the country.