Nigerian cabinet to decide on President Yar'Adua

A Nigerian federal court ordered the cabinet to pass a resolution within 14 days on whether President Yar'Adua is still capable of duties.

Nigerian cabinet to decide on President Yar'Adua

Nigeria's cabinet will decide within 14 days whether President Umaru Yar'Adua is fit enough to govern Africa's nation after a two-month absence for medical treatment, the Attorney General said on Friday.

The 58-year-old leader has not been seen publicly since leaving on Nov. 23 to receive treatment for a heart ailment in Saudi Arabia.

He has not transferred power to his deputy, triggering debate over the legality of government decisions.

Judge Dan Abutu ordered the cabinet to pass a resolution on Yar'Adua's fitness within two weeks after a former lawmaker brought a legal case against the government.

"We will abide by the judgement of the court. The Executive Council of the Federation will within 14 days, as directed, consider a resolution on the state of the president's health," Attorney General Michael Aondoakaa said.

The Senate, which was briefed on Thursday on Yar'Adua's health in a closed-door session, is due to meet next Tuesday for an update and may also take a position on whether the president should remain in office.

The cabinet unanimously agreed in early December, less than 10 days after Yar'Adua left for Saudi Arabia, that there were no grounds to seek his resignation, rejecting calls for him to step down.

Nigeria's ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Abdullah Aminchi, said a week ago Yar'Adua was expected to be discharged from hospital very soon after showing significant recovery.

Foreign Minister Ojo Maduekwe declined to give a clear answer when questioned in a BBC interview broadcast on Thursday.

"I am sure if the president is able to return yesterday, he would come back by yesterday ... This president will do nothing that jeopardises the national interest," he said.

"I do not rule out (a transfer of power to Jonathan) but he should not be stampeded into doing that."


Reuters

Last Mod: 22 Ocak 2010, 17:07
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