Festus Keyamo, minister of state for labour and employment, says Bola Tinubu, president-elect, will be sworn into office to avoid a vacuum in the government.
Keyamo spoke in reaction to comments credited to John Onaiyekan, former Catholic archbishop of Abuja, who said “it doesn’t make much sense” for Tinubu to be sworn in before the conclusion of the election tribunal.
Tinubu is expected to be sworn in as president on May 29. His victory is being challenged in court by Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP).
In a tweet on Thursday, the minister said the archbishop was going against Tinubu because he was not his preferred candidate during the elections.
“All issues raised against the victory of Tinubu in court now (whether it is 25% votes in FCT or the fake drug issue, etc), are not different from issues raised against previous presidents-elect because basically, the complaints have always been that the declared victor did not win the election fair and square or was not qualified to contest the election,” Keyamo said.
“No disqualifying issue against a candidate can be greater than other disqualifying issues since a single issue can decide a case against a President-elect.
“So, why all the fuss now? It has always been our electoral template since 1999 for the declared winners to be sworn into office in order to avoid a vacuum and not to foist an unconstitutional contraption on the system whilst the cases are in court.”
The minister said Onaiyekan should “consider stepping back from the deep and murky waters of politics and desist from descending into the arena of political conflicts”.
“The embarrassment to the body of Christ is getting too much and no politician is worth dragging this dignified body into unnecessary political controversy. Is this too much to ask, daddy?” he said.