The All Progressives Congress, APC, is said to be
uncomfortable with the May 28 handover date
proposed by the out-going administration of President
Outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan and the
President-elect, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari are set to
clash over a proposal by the Jonathan team to hand
over the mantle of leadership to Buhari on May the
28th, instead of the 29th.
According to reports, the Buhari team was already over
what they considered as “an act of ill-will laced with
It will be recalled that the Minister of Information,
Senator Patricia Akwashiki, on Wednesday announced
that President Jonathan would perform the handover
ceremony at a dinner on May 28.
She had said, “By May 28, the President intends to
have the formal handover done at a dinner so that we
can reserve May 29 for the incoming government.”
However, since the return of democracy in 1999, the
traditional date for the handover of power has been
May 29, which is also observed as Democracy Day.
This tradition has been the vogue for the past 16 years
and gives the outgoing President the opportunity to
formally present the instrument of authority to his
successor in the full glare of members of the public,
local and international media, as well as foreign
A top member of the APC, who spoke on condition of
anonymity said, “It is simply not acceptable, we are
rejecting it, it is a trap.”
The source added that from a security point of view, it
could be considered a trap.
“How can anyone explain a situation where an
outgoing president and his team will conveniently
excuse themselves from an event where they are
supposed to play a role when the President-elect and
the Vice-President- elect are supposed to be present?”
the source queried.
According to the source, power abhors a vacuum as
such, the constitution does not envisage a situation
where Nigeria will be without a sitting President even
for one hour.
The source said, “If Jonathan hands over on the 28th,
who accounts for the hours before the morning of the
29th when the Chief Justice of the Federation is to
administer the oath of office and the oath of allegiance?
“What if there is even a sinister motive to this whole
saga? As the President of the nation; who will still be
the Chief Security officer until he hands over, there is
no excuse that is strong enough to excuse him from the
Also, a member of the Buhari campaign team, Mr.
Rotimi Fashakin, while reacting to the development
said, “The proposed handover on the 28th portends ill
for the political destiny of this nation.
“That statement is loaded and it shows that the
Nigerian people should not rest yet that there is still
ominous signs which we should never take for granted.
If Jonathan truly said he is handing over on the 28th it
presupposes that he will be absent on the 29th.
“Number one, if he hands over on the 28th to the
President-elect, does Gen. Muhammadu Buhari start to
act effectively on that date? The answer is an emphatic
“GMB does not start to act on that date, if you get what
I mean. Handing over to GMB on that date is not only
meaningless, it is stupid. It has no meaning in law, or
reality. It means that for 24 hours before GMB takes
over there will be a vacuum.”
When contacted to speak on the president-elect’s views
on the handover date and appointments, the APC
National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed,
said, “You will get our reaction later after due