The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Presidency have disagreed over President Muhammadu Buhari’s trip to the United Kingdom.
Appearing on Channels Television’s Politics Today, the PDP’s Deputy National Chairman, Yemi Akinwonmi, said the President ought to have written to the National Assembly indicating his mission abroad and transferring power to the Vice President.
“I know by the standard convention all over the world, it is conventional that when the President is travelling out of a domain, whether privately or publicly after about six or seven days, he has to have a course to the National Assembly to disclose his mission and then transfer power to the Vice President.
“These guys are talking as if Nigeria is a private enterprise, it is not. The President derives his power from the citizens. And he is responsible not to the presidency but to Nigerians. The money he is going to spend in the course of the journey is derived from the federation account.”
But the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu insisted that the President can perform his duty from anywhere he is.
“The President didn’t make a mistake by taking off without writing a letter to the National Assembly. The Constitution says 21 days is the back off point. That is where infringement is caused.
“But as it is now, there is no Constitutional or legal infraction that has happened. So the President is doing his work from wherever he is. Yes, it is right that the President can operate anywhere he is. If you are a Permanent Secretary and the President calls you from Abidjan and says you go and repair that road, are you going to tell him that Mr. President you are not a Nigerian in Abidjan, you are not going to do the work?
“Do you think you will have your job waiting for you the next day? These are matters of common sense,” he stated.
Both comments come four days after the President jetted out of the country over what the presidency described as a private trip.