It is no news that some media and personalities have been reporting of a “planned” installation of an Interim National Government by President Goodluck Jonathan. Sahara Reporters, Obasanjo and other “sources” are few people to be propagating this “revelation”.
We were told that the Jonathan’s administration has no plan to conduct the election and it planned to create a chaos for the Army led by General Kenneth Minimah to takeover the reins of power because they will rather not witness a Buhari government.
Later we were told that the President plans to perpetually remain in power by getting the NASS postpone the election for six months with the pretence of the crises in the North – East. The plan is to invoke Section 135(3) of the Constitution according to this theory.
Just of recent we were told by Sahara Reporters that their “Source” told them that Jonathan approached exHead of State General Abdulsalam Abubakar and “begged” him to head the supposed ING. The plan according to this source is to prevent Muhammadu Buhari from gaining victory at the poll. According to SR, the Jonathan government is to bribe NASS members with $2m and $1m each for Senate and Reps members respectively.
The plan here is for them to invoke Section 135(3) of the Constitution and declare the ING.
Aside from the fact that all theories appear disjointed and does not portray in anyway as to how Jonathan will benefit from the schemes, it also begs for the question of what is the possibility?
Firstly, Jonathan had told the US Secretary of State Mr John Kerry that the election will be held and a New Government inaugurated come May 29. President Jonathan repeated the statement in his media chat. So far, there has been no clue as to whether he plans to remain indefinitely. He also debunked the story of handing over to the Military or any illegal government
Secondly, the talk of Interim National Government is alien to our constitution. There is no way that can happen when we have no constitutional crises. There is no way Abdulsalam or Minimah can assume power except there is a coup. If there is any, then there will be a counter coup. Assuming Jonathan even considers bribing the NASS to get the six(6) months extension, he doesn’t need an Abdulsalam or an ING to lead during the extension period. Section 135(3) of the Constitution is very clear that the incumbent preside over the country for the period of any extension. Considering that the opposition controls the House, the ruling party have the Senate, except there is a compromise, that will not scale through.
Thirdly, if the President is to exploit the Military. it will be to give PDP undue advantage at the poll by harassing the opposition on the day of election, and not to handover power to any Gen Minimah or a phantom ING that isn’t feasible anywhere.
This talk of an ING is baseless, a distraction, a tool to heat up the already saturated polity. It is one propaganda too many. It is a threat to peace and our collective unity. I have absolute confidence that the election will be held and winner will be inaugurated come May 29.