Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has today taken over as Acting President of Nigeria according to Section 145 of the Nigerian constitution, despite the ambiguous wording of the letter by President Muhammadu Buhari who is on indefinite undisclosed medical vacation abroad.
Section 145 of the Nigerian Constitution provides that;
“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 otherwise unable to discharge the functions of his office, until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary such functions shall be discharged by the Vice-President as ACTING PRESIDENT”
President Buhari’s letter to the National Assembly was read on the floor of the Senate today.
A PDP Senator from Abia state raised a Point of Order on the floor of the Senate Tuesday, challenging the phrase by President Buhari in his letter to the Senatr which described the Vice President as “Coordinating Vice President”
The Senator’s Point of Order was however stood down by the Senate Leader, with the Senate resolving that the President already referred to Section 145 of the constitution which was clear enough in defining what role or nomenclature the Vice President would henceforth function as, infering that whatever other nomenclature used later in the later was inconsequential because the Constitution is clear that Osinbajonis now Acting President of Nigeria.
According to legal experts, it doesn’t matter what term the President uses to describe the Vice President when he is to act as President, according to Section 145 of the Constitution, the Vice President becomes Acting President and has all the powers of the President until the President transmits another letter that he is to resume as President.
The Nigeria media have been advised not to give validity to the strange term used in Buhari’s, by avoiding it’s use in referring to the Acting President.