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Jonathan holds valedictory FEC today



Chief Nyesom Wike

May dissolve cabinet FG asks Bayelsa CJ to swear in Wike 

AS the Federal Executive Council (FEC) holds it valedictory meeting today, strong indications have emerged that President Goddluck Jonathan might dissolve the cabinet shortly .

Meanwhile, in a bid to avoid a constitutional crisis, the Federal Government yesterday requested the Chief Judge of Bayelsa State to administer the Oath of Allegiance and Oath of Office on the Rivers State Governor-elect, Chief Nyesom Wike, on May 29, 2015.

The impending dissolution is preparatory to May 29 2015 when Jonathan, who lost to his main challenger, Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) is expected to hand over.

The President, according to the handover time-table will conduct the President-elect and his vice, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) round the Presidential Villa on Thursday, May 28.

Already the President has commenced Series of disengagement activities like valedictory services in strategic churches in the Federal Capital beginning with the Cathedral Church of the Advent, Life Camp, Gwarimpa, Abuja on May 10; last Council of State and Police Council meetings on May 12; valedictory church service at the Villa Chapel on May 17, which will be rounded off with the inauguration church service at the National Christian Centre (NCC) in Abuja on Sunday, May 24.

Similarly, the President had last week reportedly written series of commendation letters to his ministers and other aides, “for their meritorious services” while they worked under him.

One of the affected ministers was quoted by a media report yesterday as saying that the implication was that in compliance with the directive from the President, all ministers were expected to handover the affairs of their respective ministries to their Permanent Secretaries beginning from tomorrow, Thursday.

Besides, Jonathan attended his last summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) yesterday in Accra, the Ghanaian capital as Nigerian leader.

Unveiling the details of the disengagement activities as ratified by the Council of State during its May 12 sitting, as presented by governors Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu of Niger State and his Benue State counterpart, Gabriel Suswam indicated that, Friday, May 22 would be for Juma’at prayers; Sunday, May 24 would be for interdenominational church service; May 28 will be for facility tour of State House by the President-elect and his vice, handing over of documents to the incoming President by Jonathan and dinner.

On May 29, apart from the inauguration proper, there would be a luncheon and gala night.

A statement released to reporters in Abuja said the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke (SAN) ‎made the request on behalf of the Federal Government.

Adoke explained that the request became necessary because of the existing vacuum in the Office of the Chief Judge of Rivers State as well as the Office of the President of the Customary Court of Appeal of the state.

He said the vacuum had made strict compliance with requirements of Section 185(1) and (2) of the 1999 Constitution under which Wike should be sworn in, virtually impossible.

He therefore said in order to avert the likelihood of a constitutional crisis in the state on May 29, he had requested the Bayelsa CJ to carry out the exercise in accordance with Section 185 (2) of the Constitution.

He said the section provides that “the Oath of Allegiance and the Oath of Office shall be administered by the Chief Judge of the state or Grand Khadi of the Sharia Court of Appeal of the state, if any, or President of the Customary Court of Appeal of the state, if any, or the person for the time being respectively appointed to exercise the functions of any of those offices in any state.”

“The general public, particularly the government and people of Rivers State, are hereby invited to take note of this development and appreciate the fact that the invitation extended to the Chief Judge of Bayelsa State to administer the Oath of Allegiance and Oath of Office on the Governor-elect of Rivers State on May 29, 2015 is in accordance with the Constitution and should therefore be respected by all and sundry,” Adoke added.

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