FEC delegation to Saudi submits reports
*Keeps mum on Yar'Adua's health
*Reprimands Akunyili on comments in the media
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has again avoided the discussion of the status of
President Yar'Adua's health, with regards to the much expected activation of section 144 (1)
(a) of the 1999 constitution, by declaring him unfit to return to work.
This section states that: “The President or Vice-
President shall cease to hold office, if—
(a) by a resolution passed by two-third majority of all
members of the executive council of the Federation it is
declared that the President or Vice-President is
incapable of performing the functions of his office”
Recall that the President Yar'Adua has not been able to
govern the country since November 23, 2009 when he
left for Saudi Arabia for medical treatment and was
bedridden for 93 days before his Kitchen cabinet
unexpectedly sneaked him into the country at night on
February 26, 2009.
As at the time of this report, a week has passed since the President was flown to the country in
an air ambulance, still no government officials have seen him, not even his deputy, Dr
Jonathan who has been mandated to carry on with the affairs of the country in acting capacity.
The president has not even appeared on a national television to address Nigerians who voted
him into power. His health status has been shrouded in secrecy by his wife Hajia Turai Yar'
Adua and ministers who are members of his kitchen cabinet.
To this end, the FEC meeting of today Wednesday (March 3, 2010) which is expected to
make a pronouncement on section 144 of the constitution kept silent on the issue but rather
received the reports of the six-ministerial delegation sent to Saudi Arabia to visit the President.
The meeting also reportedly castigated the utterances of the information minister Dora
Akunyili in the media over the weekend. Her statement was said to be inflammatory and
capable of heating up the polity.
The Saudi report reads:
1) Recall that on the 17th of February council constituted a six man cabinet delegation to visit
President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua who was hospitalized in Saudi Arabia . They were also to
convey the appreciation of the government and the good people of Nigeria to the Saudi
Monarch for the care and support given to our President.
2. Membership of the delegation was as follows:
(i) Mahmud Yayale Ahmed, CFR, Leader of the Delegation
(ii) Chief Ojo Maduekwe, CFR, Member
(iii) Dr. Rilwanu Lukman, CFR, Member
(iv) Prince Adetokunbo Kayode, SAN, Member
(V) Prof. Babatunde Osotimehin,OON Member
(vi) Dr. Abba Sayyadi Ruma, Member
3. Preparatory to this visit the acting president had addressed a letter to the Royal Majesty,
King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , introducing the
delegation as a special envoy from the presidency. In the letter, the acting president conveyed
the profound appreciation and deep gratitude of the government and the entire people of
Nigeria to the king, for the kindness, hospitality, fraternal care and excellent facilities extended
to President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua.
4. The delegation reported that they departed Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport , Abuja ,
early hours of Tuesday, 23rd February 2010, some minutes after midnight. On their arrival in
Riyadh , Saudi Arabia , they were received the Nigerian Ambassador, Alhaji Abdullahi Aminchi
and the Royal Protocol Personnel and driven straight to the Conference Palace , where they
5. Prior to their arrival, the Nigerian Ambassador has secured appointment for them to be
recived by His Highness, Prince Saud Al-Faisal, Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs at 18.00
hours on the 23rd February, 2010. The Foreign Minister received us on behalf of the Saudi
King and re-affirmed the commitment of the Saudi Government to promoting good relationship
with Nigeria . He also assured the delegation that the Health of President Yar'Adua was
improving. The delegation thanked the Saudi Foreign Minister for the warm reception and the
hospitality which the kingdom accorded to them and delivered the Acting President's letter to
him, for onward transmission to His Royal Majesty, King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud.
6. Thereafter, the Nigerian Ambassador, Alhaji Abdullahi Aminchi informed the delegation that
he had received information that President Yar'Adua had been discharged and was on his way
back to Abuja . From all indications, the President must have departed Jeddah Airport at about
10 pm, Saudi time on Tuesday 23rd February 2010. With news that the President had left
Saudi Arabia for Nigeria , the delegation did not consider it necessary to proceed to Jeddah,
where the President was hospitalized. Accordingly, they decided to return to Nigeria .
7. The delegation departed Riyadh at about 5.30am on Wednesday 24th February 2010 and
arrived Abuja at about 10.30 am.
8. The Acting President was accordingly briefed on their return.
SECRETARY TO THE
GOVERNEMNT OF THE FEDERATION,
Head of Delegation, Abuja
Though the president has returned to the country, but still reportedly wired to a life support
machine. Also, nobody has set eyes on him since he was sneaked into the country at night,
his kitchen cabals have sworn to scuttle any plot to impeach him or declaring him unfit. What