President Muhammadu Buhari has given reasons why he did not hand over to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo during his earlier UK trip –
The president through a lawyer, Friday Aliyu, said that his trip was just a few days and not up to 21 days that required such action –
The lawyer is asking the court to strike out the case before formal hearing as it lacks the basis for it to stand President Muhammadu Buhari has defended his action to not hand over power to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo when he visited the UK privately bwtwen April 25 to May 5, 2019.
The Nation reports that Buhari said there was no constitutional requirement for him to do since the journey was less than 21 days. The president made this known in a suit by a Lagos-based lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, which challenged him and the Attorney-General of the Federation for not delegating power to the vice president.
The was suit marked, FHC/L/CS/763/2019, is before Justice A. O. Faji of the Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos and will be heard on Monday, October 7. The petitioner is asking the court to say whether under the constitution the president can go on vacation for without informing the National Assembly to empower his vice to preform presidential functions in his place.
The president through Friday Aliyu, a lawyer in the Civil Litigation Department of the Federal Ministry of Justice, defended his action through a six-page affidavit.
The affidavit reads in part: “It is a fact that the 1999 Constitution (as amended) regulates the performance of the duties of the President of the federal Republic of Nigeria in situations where the President is proceeding on vacation or is otherwise unable to discharge the functions of office.
“That it is a fact that where the President embarks on a vacation or otherwise is unable to discharge the functions of his office and fails to transmit a written declaration to that effect, he will be considered not to have complied with the constitution (as amended). World Bank lists Nigeria among top 20 reformers in ease of doing business
“That the time within which the President has to transmit a written letter to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is 21 days.
“ The affidafvit added that the said trip was only for nine days and the president has not gone against any constitutional provision not to delegate power.
Aliyu also asked the court to strike out the suit and not given a formal hearing because it lacks proofs to back up its case.