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24 Aug 2017

No Law Says FEC Meeting Must Be Held Every Week - Femi Adesina Defends Buhari

The Senior Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, has defended the President's decision to cancel the FEC meeting, stating that it's not constitutional.
Adesina and Buhari
While speaking in a telephone interview on Channels Television’s programme, 'Politics Today' on Wednesday in Abuja, the Senior Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari, Femi Adesina, defended the President’s decision to cancel the Federal Executive Council Meeting on Wednesday.

It was reported earlier that a statement by Adesina in the morning announced the decision but gave no reason for the cancellation of the weekly FEC meeting which would have been the first attended by the President after his return from a more-than-100 days medical vacation.

Speaking to Seun Okinbaloye during the TV programme, the presidential spokesman said there was nothing to Buhari cancelling the FEC meeting and that concerns about its implications were uncalled for.

He said; “There is no law that says the Federal Executive Council meeting should hold every week. There is no law that says it must be weekly. Under a past administration, it used to hold once every two weeks.

“So, there is no law that says it should hold every Wednesday. It depends on what you have on the agenda to discuss. The President is the Chairman of that meeting. So, he has the discretion to hold or not to hold (the meeting).”

President Buhari’s decision to cancel the meeting had led to more questions about his fitness to resume work and carry out his duties effectively.

On Tuesday, news that he would be working from home because rodents had damaged items in his office and that it was under renovation caused a stir and went viral on the social media.

But Adesina dismissed the concerns, saying that the President is strong enough to perform his duties and that the office in his home and the one in his office complex were only a short distance apart in any case.

“The fact that FEC does not hold in one week does not mean anything significant because the President has the discretion to hold or not to hold FEC (meetings),” he said.

When asked if the cancellation of Wednesday’s meeting meant that FEC would no longer be meeting weekly, he said it wasn’t the case, before going on to say that the meeting had not held every week over time in the first case.

“That is not correct. It did not hold every week; when this administration began, it did not hold every week. And right from then, it had been understood that the FEC would hold as often as there are things to discuss,” Adesina said.

Had yeasterday’s FEC meeting held and the President attended, it would have been the first he would be presiding over in more than three months. Vice President Yemi Osinbajo who was the Acting President while he was away presided over the weekly meeting in his absence.

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