admin by admin May 28, 2023
Just In: May 29: Senate President Ahmad Lawan to act as Nigeria’s President for 10hrs
Not many Nigerians are aware that, by law, the Senate President (the number 3 citizen) automatically becomes Acting President (Ag. number 1 citizen) of Nigeria from 12 midnight of May 28th to 10:00am thereabout of May 29th when a new President and his deputy subscribe to the Oath of Office.
Consequently, as Muhammadu Buhari exits office as President, Senate President Ahmad Lawan will assume the role of (Acting) President immediately the outgoing Nigerian leader’s tenure expires 12 midnight today by effusion of time, until the President-elect Bola Tinubu is sworn in
Chapter 6. Part 1. Section 146, of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, which deals with the “discharge Of Functions Of President” as amended, indicates in sub section 2, that; “Where any vacancy occurs in the circumstances mentioned in subsection (1) of this section during a period when the office of Vice-President is also vacant, the President of the Senate shall hold the office of President for a period of not more than three months, during which there shall be an election of a new President, who shall hold office for the unexpired term of office of the last holder of the office.”
The situation is not new. In 2019, the then Senate President Bukola Saraki, acted as President of Nigeria from 12 midnight of May 28th to 10:30am on May 29th, when President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo took their oath of office for the second term.
Osinbajo, himself, a Constitutional Lawyer and teacher, had while speaking at the post-inauguration dinner, said Buhari’s first tenure which expired at 12 midnight of May 28th, had created a vacuum.
According to him, “Something interesting happened earlier today. I am a lawyer and a law teacher and I like to test and interrogate legal scenarios.
“At one minute past midnight today. The four-year term of Mr. President and I ended by effluxion of time. So, from one minute past 12 of last night, May 29 to about 10:30 am when we were sworn in for a second term.
But Osinbajo stated that “Interestingly nothing went wrong, all was okay. When such a situation arises it is the Senate President who acts as President.
“So, when I arrived at Eagle Square this morning some may have noticed that the Senate President and I were enjoying a joke. He said to me jokingly “you better be careful you know I am the acting President now.” So, we thank Mr Senate President for not doing anything funny.”