Fred Itua, Abuja
Few days after a proclamation purportedly issued by President Muhammadu Buhari, announcing the inauguration of the Ninth National Assembly, a new proclamation surfaced in Abuja, yesterday.
In the previous controversial letter, it was not addressed to the Clerk to the National Assembly (CNA), Mohammed Sani-Omolori, as required by law.
However, in the new proclamation, it was written by president Buhari and addressed to the CNA, Sani-Omolori.
The proclamation indicated that the Eight National Assembly will stand dissolved by 12:00am of June 8, while a new parliament would be inaugurated by 10:00am of Tuesday, June 11.
Confirming the authentic proclamation to newsmen, yesterday, Omolori said: “I have received a letter from president Buhari, announcing the end of the Eight National Assembly.
“The letter has clearly stated that by 12:00am of June 8, the Eight National Assembly would stand dissolved.
“The letter was duly addressed to me. The letter also indicated that the Eight National Assembly would have its first session on June 11. It also stated that it will be inaugurated by 10:00am on Tuesday.”
On Monday, an unconfirmed presidential proclamation of the Ninth National Assembly surfaced in the National Assembly.
The May 30, 2019 proclamation, purportedly signed by President Buhari was not addressed to any officer in the either the National Assembly management or the two chambers.
Neither was it addressed to the CNA. The document, with a presidential seal, went viral on social media, yesterday.
Although sources at Sani-Omolori’s office confirmed receipt of the said proclamation, however, Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, promised to establish the authenticity, or otherwise, of the document and revert to reporters. He did not.
Another presidential aide simply pushed reporters back to Enang, for confirmation.
The three paragraph letter, written under the crest of the “President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, which was titled: Proclamation for the holding of the First session of the Ninth National Assembly” read: “Whereas it is provided in Section 64(3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) that the person elected as President shall have power to issue a Proclamation for the holding of the first session of the National Assembly immediately after his being sworn-in.
“Now, therefore, I Muhammadu Buhari, President Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in exercise of the powers bestowed upon me by Section 64 (3) aforesaid and of all other powers enabling me in that behalf, hereby proclaim me in that behalf, hereby proclaim that the first session of the Ninth National Assembly shall hold at 10:00am on Tuesday, June 11, 2019 in the National Assembly, Abuja.
“Given under my hand and the public seal of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at Abuja, this 30th day of May, 2019.”
It was signed: “Muhammadu Buhari”