Nigeria: Buhari's UK Trip - PDP Urges NASS to Address Power Vacuum

President Muhammadu Buhari
12 April 2018

Abuja — The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has tasked the National Assembly to look into what it called the "current power vacuum," arising from the President Muhammadu Buhari's departure for the United Kingdom (UK) on Monday. This is even as the party accused the first citizen of shrouding his "private visit" to London in secrecy.

In a statement signed by the party's image maker, Kola Ologbondiyan on Thursday, the party noted that the failure to transmit a letter to the lawmakers without allegedly transferring power to the Vice President portend a constitutional crisis if not well handled.

"PDP demands that the National Assembly save the nation from an imminent constitutional crisis by immediately commencing processes to address the current power vacuum in the country, following President Muhammadu Buhari's decision to embark on a private trip abroad without officially transmitting power to the Vice President.

"More astonishing is the fact that President Buhari did not transmit a letter to the National Assembly indicating that he was going on a week's vacation ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM)," the statement read, adding that "The intervention of the federal legislature has become a national imperative, as the President's action has put the nation in clear danger."

The party also expressed doubt as to the true purpose of the UK trip, stressing that on arrival; no government official of that country was on hand to symbolically receive him.

"It is incontrovertible that President Buhari is on a private trip to the UK as he was not received on arrival, by the government of that country; has not had any contact with the British Prime Minister, Theresa May or any high official of the UK government and has not conducted any official business since his arrival to the country on Monday.

"Since Monday, President Buhari has been holidaying in London and has been unable to discharge the functions of his office, in total disregard to the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution, disdain to Nigerians and flagrant abuse of his presidential office.

"By embarking on this vacation and abdicating his official functions without transmitting a written declaration to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and holding on to power while on vacation, President Buhari acted in gross violation of Section 145 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended)," the party alleged.

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