President Muhammadu Buhari would proceed on another vacation tomorrow, the presidency has announced.
Using the official Twitter handle, the presidency said the president would start the vacation in London from tomorrow, and has transferred power to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
“President @MBuhari begins a 10-working-days holiday from August 3, 2018.
” In compliance with Section 145 (1) of the 1999 Constitution, a letter has been transmitted to the President of the Senate, and the Speaker, House of Representatives to that effect.
“While the President is on vacation, Vice President @ProfOsinbajo will be in acting capacity as President.
”President Buhari will be in London for the holiday,” it said.
The trip comes amidst a busy week in Nigeria’s political landscape. Three governors in Mr Buhari’s party have renounced their membership and joined the opposition where they hope to raise a formidable team to defeat the president in 2019.
The presidency did not elaborate on the specific assignments the president would engage in while away, an omisdion that seemed more deliberate than oversight.
The president has embarked on several trips in the past in which he exercised functions that were not necessary parts of his disclosed itineraries.
The latest trip comes barely three months after the president traveled to London for Commonwealth leaders’ meeting in April. Although the event proper was slated for April 18-20, the president left Nigeria on April 9, raising questions about his health.
Barely two weeks after returning from London, Mr Buhari went to the United States for bilateral talks with President Donald Trump. The president raised yet suspicion about his health when he failed to return to Nigeria two days after leaving the U.S., a journey that typically does not exceed 15 hours, even with a stopover.
The president later said the trip was due to a presidential plane that was not operating optimally, compelling him to make a stopover in London. Nigerians and opposition politicians, however, viewed the claim with suspicion, ridiculing the “technical stopover” as preposterous.
Beginning with his extended medical vacation over an ear infection in mid-2016, the president has spent more than 172 days, surpassing former President Umar Yar’Adua, who died in office in 2010, the ICIR found in May.
Critics of Mr Buhari have called on him to resign in consideration of his failing health, an advice the president and his loyalists have strongly rejected.
Instead, the president, who once promised to serve only one term, declared in April that he would seek reelection in 2019, consequently shutting down insinuations that his resignation may come before his first time elapses.
Political analysts also said his declaration fast-tracked the ongoing wave of defection hitting the All Progressives Congress, as politicians eyeing the party’s presidential ticket accepted the reality that they stand no chance.
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