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Buhari resumes work

N/Assembly receives president’s letter President Muhammadu Buhari had a busy time yesterday on his first day at work after a seven-week medical leave in the…

N/Assembly receives president’s letter

President Muhammadu Buhari had a busy time yesterday on his first day at work after a seven-week medical leave in the UK.

The president, who returned to the country Friday, was at his office at the Presidential Villa Abuja by 11 am.

He received briefings from his aides before settling down for a meeting with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

Osinbajo was said to have updated the president on major government activities that took place in his absence.

The Vice President then returned to his office where he presided over the National Economic Council meeting.

President Buhari had another meeting with the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele after which the governor went to join the meeting of the NEC.

The President also met several senior government officials separately, attended to some files and returned to his residence late in the afternoon.

A Presidency source, who spoke on a condition of anonymity, explained that though the president was back to work, “What we all know as official activities will commence formally tomorrow (today).” 

Earlier, President Buhari had written to the National Assembly notifying them that he had resumed work after his medical vacation.

“I have resumed my functions as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria with effect from Monday, March 13, 2017, after my vacation,” presidential spokesmen, Femi Adesina  quoting from the president’s letter to the legislators said.

The Senior Special Assistants to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang and Samaila Kawu were also at the State House to pick the president’s letters to the parliament.

Addressing State House correspondents shortly after a one-hour closed-door meeting with Buhari, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo declared that the president was much ready for work.

Osinbajo, who had acted as president while Buhari was away, emphasised that he was now back to his regular position as vice president.

Asked how Buhari was doing on resumption, Osinbajo said: “He is very well. We just had a very long meeting where basically, trying to bring the president up to date as to some of the things we have done while he was away‎. And he has given a few directives on what we should be doing on so many areas, the north east, budget, the economy; a wide range of issues.” 

Asked if Buhari was ready for work, the vice president answered in the affirmative, saying, “He held a meeting with me for over an hour where we discussed a wide range of issues. So, his readiness for work is not in doubt at all. In fact, he is over ready.”

On whether he had ‘handed over’ back to the president, Osinbajo exclaimed: “Oh yes! I’m back to my regular position as vice president.”

Osinbajo maintained that the president was “reasonably satisfied” with the way he piloted the affairs of the country while he (Buhari) was away.

Responding to the insinuation that given Buhari’s health condition, there might be a lot of delegation of duties, the vice president said his principal had always given him “several responsibilities.”

He said the administration works as a team in which very little is done without President Buhari’s clearance.

“I think what we must recognise is that the way this administration works is that, it has always been a team work. Very little is done without the president’s clearance. So, generally speaking, even with responsibilities that are my constitutional responsibilities, we have full discussions on them, we have full agreements on all of those issues.

“It is not necessarily delegation. Yes, in some cases, delegation; but by and large, practically on everything, I discuss fully with him and have his endorsement before we are able to go on and do anything at all,” Osinbajo clarified.

Earlier yesterday morning, there was a change of the Presidential Guards  at the Presidential Villa which usually holds every Monday. 

Those sighted at the Presidential Villa yesterday included the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; the Minister of Water Resources, Sulaiman Adamu; the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami and Senator Abu Ibrahim (APC, Katsina South).

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