I’ll handover on May 29, 2023; No extension — Pres. Buhari rejects appeals for extension

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday insisted that he will handover to an elected successor and leave government at the end of his constitutionally allowed maximum eight years tenure on 29, May, 2023.

The President reiterated that he will quit office in a statement from the presidency signed by Buhari senior special assistant on media and publicity, Malam Garba Shehu issued in reaction to suggestions by two senior lawyer that he should extend his tenure beyond the constitutionally allowed period.

“In response to the Senior Advocate of Nigeria’s recent remarks, the Presidency wishes to state as follows: Chief Robert Clarke, a very well-respected elder may be sincere in his wish for the President to extend his term by six months. We wish to categorically restate that the President will step down on May 29th, 2023, after serving two terms – as per the constitution.

Having been the first recipient of a democratic transfer of power from an incumbent administration to an opposition candidate in Nigerian history, the President is committed to extending and entrenching democratic values across the country. He shall, in turn, hand the privilege of serving the people of Nigeria to whomever they choose through free, fair and credible elections.”

The statement didn’t end there though as it also made reference to earlier calls by another legal luminary Chief Afe Babalola for an interim government. “Yet there are others, such as Chief Afe Babalola, that believe elections should be suspended, with the current elected government replaced by an interim unelected administration.

This, he claims, is necessary to create a new constitution for the people, made possible, paradoxically, by ignoring their democratic rights. Down that path lies crisis and instability. Instead, this administration proposes something entirely simpler: honouring the constitution and people’s right to decide.”

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