/ 2 December 2009

Nigerian Cabinet rejects calls for president to step down

The Nigerian government on Wednesday flatly rejected calls by dozens of public figures for ailing president Umaru Yar’Adua to resign, according to a statement released after a Cabinet meeting.

More than 50 Nigerian public figures had earlier called on Yar’Adua to resign on the grounds that ill health had impaired his judgement.

Yar’Adua (58) is undergoing treatment for a heart condition in a Saudi Arabian hospital. His ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) issued a statement on Monday saying he is “improving steadily”.

Information Minister Dora Akunyili said in a statement issued after a Cabinet meeting that the government had “unanimously resolved that there is no basis for the invocation of the provisions of … the Constitution, for the reason that the president has not been found incapable of discharging his functions.”

“Council wishes to inform all Nigerians that all organs of government are functioning and that government will continue to deliver,” Akunyili said. — AFP