Monday, May 19, 2008
Yar’Adua: I’ll Quit if I Lose at S’Court
It's been a while I know. But this is one piece of news that gladdans my heart. It is not just because the President is rumoured to be of ill-health but just his intergrity has blown me away.
According to AFP, Fears of a possible constitutional crisis if the 2007 presidential election was annulled by the Supreme Court were allayed yesterday by President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. He said at the weekend that he would quit power if the Supreme Court annuls his election.
Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, presidential candidates of Action Congress (AC) and All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) respectively at the April 2007 poll, are currently challenging Yar’Adua’s election at the Supreme Court.
They had initially lost their case at the Appeal Court for what the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal called lack of evidence to substantiate their claims that the election was rigged.
But Yar’Adua said yesterday that he would quit power if the Supreme Court ruled against his victory.
"I will leave office immediately," Yar'Adua told AFP in an interview when asked what he would do if the Supreme Court invalidates the result of the poll that brought him to power.
Rather than tow the line of several state governors whose elections have been overturned by the courts, Yar'Adua who has always said his cardinal principle is respect for the rule of law, and who on each occasion had asked the affected governors to vacate their seats.
"When it comes to my own election, I need to do the same. On the day there is judgment, I will leave office and ask the Chief Justice to swear in whoever the Supreme Court says should be sworn in," Yar'Adua said.
Going by the practice in the states, the Senate President David Mark, as the No 3 citizen, may be sworn in as acting president if Yar’Adua’s election is cancelled while a fresh election will be held within 90 days.
The Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal in March dismissed the prayer by Abubakar and Buhari that the poll be annulled and re-run on grounds of electoral fraud.