A Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Olabode George, has disclosed why the inauguration of the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu should not hold on May 29, 2023.
Chief George, who stated this during an interview with The Punch, said if the tribunal judgement does not meet up before May 29, and the inauguration takes place, it is a monumental disaster for Nigeria.
“That is a monumental crisis if we don’t meet it. As they are saying that we must inaugurate, look at the temperature of the country right now from the North to the South. It’s graveyard silence. Where is the jubilation? What is that hurry? Whoever becomes the President will spend the next four years in office, so a few more days to allow justice to be dispensed is not too much,” he said.
According to the PDP Chieftain, who said he was speaking from his layman’s view, there must be a way around it by the leadership, even though, the constitution and electoral laws stipulated that handling over must take place, on a particular day.
“Yes. They should hold on. My question is: what is the hurry? Buhari also said he would move to Daura or run somewhere,” he stated.
“What I am saying from my layman’s view because I’m not a lawyer, is that if there is supposed to be a hand-over on a particular date because the constitution says so, the national leadership, because it has the peace of this nation at heart, can stay on, not because they want to, but for the peace of the nation. They can make an immediate arrangement for somebody from the National Assembly to be sworn in. At least, there are no questions and queries about their election,” he added.
The former Nigerian Port Authority Boss, who spoke against an interim government, said President Buhari’s tenure can be extended, or better still, Vice President, Yemi Osibajo or Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, can take over the power, pending the tribunal judgement.
“Not necessarily an interim government; somebody can be there. You have the President, the Vice-President and if all these people are not there, you have the Senate President. There are three arms of government: the executive, the legislature and the judiciary. They are independent and if we cannot form a (new) government, what is wrong with them telling the President to stay on for some more days? That can be for peace.”
Frustrated by the pace, at which the case is being handled by the tribunal, the former Ondo State military administrator said, said the election is not complete, until the judgement is passed, alleging that the tribunal said all petitions and documentation for and against, must be frontloaded, to allow May 29 hold.
The contest is not complete until you have finished with the judiciary. So, what is that hurry? I also remember that to meet up with the deadline of May 29, the court came up with a concept called frontloading. I’m not a lawyer but they said those of us that are not lawyers are not learned, but I still went to school and did well with my English and literature. They told us that all petitions and all documentation for and against must be frontloaded. In other words, they must be delivered to the court.
“On the very first day they want to start to sit, the judges must have read all those petitions for and against so that they can just come in there to ask for clarifications of those documents that have been read and the defence lawyer can add other important information, if there is, then, they will rise for a minute and re-converge, and the judges will then give the judgment, the written judgment. So, there is still time between now and May 29 to look at the petitions before the Judges to clear their minds. They should not allow the devil to drive us,” he said.