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The House of Representatives is proposing that a president-elect resumes in the Presidential Villa to understudy the outgoing president ahead of inauguration.
Presidential election is held not less than 90 days to the expiration of the current administration, according to law.
During the waiting period, the incoming president would also be empowered to review the financial records and activities of the incumbent.
Refusal by the incumbent to cooperate with or provide requested documents by the incoming officials shall, upon conviction, attract a fine of N10m or six-month imprisonment or both.
These are some of the proposals in the Presidential (Transition) Bill 2016, which the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, sponsored in the Eighth National Assembly and reintroduced in July, 2019, when it passed the first reading.
Our correspondent obtained a copy of the bill, entitled, ‘A bill for an act to provide for the smooth and orderly transfer of power from one government to another and other related matters thereto.’
It read, “When at any general election for the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the incumbent president is not re-elected, the president shall within two weeks of the declaration of the president-elect as the winner of the election provide space for not more than 10 persons designated by the president-elect to begin a review and analysis of budgeted expenditures during the tenor of the current president, review all other necessary documents as may be requested by the president-elect’s transition team.”
The exercise, according to the legislation, is also “to acquire a working knowledge of the various offices, departments, commissions, boards and other agencies of the executive arm of the Federal Government, with a view to promoting the orderly transition of the executive power in connection with the expiration of the term of office of a president and the inauguration of a new president.”
The incumbent would also be expected to constitute his transition team who must cooperate with the president-elect and the staff he so designated, and who must be provided with any assistance that might be “reasonably requested.”
According to the proposed law, the provisions would apply at all times after each general election, whether or not the power change is within the same party or from one party to another.
“For the purpose of this act, the President shall include the vice-president and the president-elect shall include the vice-president-elect,” it stated.
The bill further read, “The President shall provide for the president-elect in connection with the preparation for his assumption of office as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria the following facilities:
“Office space well furnished and equipped with all relevant machines and electronics within the Presidential Villa to enhance smooth working relationship with the President’s team; such equipment shall include but not limited to computers/laptops, printers, binding machines, papers, communication services to aid the transition team in achieving the objective obtainable in the civil service