Tinubu Takes Over Presidency

Today, 29 May, 2023, Bola Tinubu and Kashim Shettima will drop the ‘elect’ in their titles as they assume authority as the President and Vice President respectively.

Tinubu will be sworn in as the 16th President by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Olukayode Ariwoola, at Eagle Square, Abuja.

Expectations are high as Tinubu, also called Jagaban Borgu, will be sworn in, three months after he was declared winner of February 25 presidential election.

Ahead of the inauguration of the foreign guests and other dignitaries have started arriving at the Federal Capital Territory for the ceremony.

PLATFORM TIMES reports that no fewer than 20 presidents of countries around the world, including Africa are in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, to witness today’s inauguration of Tinubu as president of the country.

Tinubu’s inauguration marks the 7th consecutive democratic transition of power in the 24 years of unbroken democracy in Nigeria, following the return to civilian administration in 1999.

Expectedly, the ceremony will be broadcast live to millions of Nigerians at home and abroad.

Officials at the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria confirmed on Saturday that the authority received a memo from the Federal Government on the expected arrival of presidents and other VIPs, who had started arriving at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

It was gathered that foreign nationals had started arriving at Abuja since Monday as the number of visitors coming through the international and presidential wings of the airport increased significantly on Saturday.

Many dignitaries, representatives of foreign governments, diplomats and heads of international organisations arrived in Abuja, the nation’s capital, on Sunday, for the inauguration of Tinubu as Nigeria’s president.

The United States delegation led by the US Secretary for Housing, Secretary Marcia Fudge touched down at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport on Sunday afternoon.

Also, the Canadian delegation, led by the Canadian Minister for Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, Hussein Ahmed, has arrived in the country.

Also, the Presidents of Algeria, Abdelmadjid Tebboune; Paul Kagame (Rwanda); Adamu Barrow (Gambia); Denis Nguesso (Congo Brazzaville); Évariste Ndayishimiye (Burundi) are also in the country for the ceremony

Others are the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo Addo; President Samia Hassan of Tanzania, and her Chadian counterpart, Mahamat Déby, among others.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Transition Council, Boss Mustapha said all arrangements have been concluded for a seamless transition of power.

He disclosed that the federal government has extended invitations to some presidents and heads of government as well as heads of international organisations, saying he was glad to report that many of the invitees confirmed attendance in person.

“Let me once again assure Nigerians and indeed the global community of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to the seamless transfer of power to President-Elect, His Excellency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, as the 16th President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“The upcoming event is historically significant to this great nation and the international community, particularly Africa because of the democratic values and lessons in nationhood. For these reasons, we have chosen, ‘Nigeria: Better Together’, as the theme for the 2023 transition,” he said.

Tinubu, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was declared the winner of the February 25, 2023 presidential election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

He defeated 17 other candidates, among them, his closest rivals, Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party to clinch Nigeria’s most coveted seat.

The security atmosphere is expected to be tensed as the Nigerian Army had issued strict warnings to those who may want to perpetuate crime during the inauguration to steer clear.

Operatives of the Nigeria Police, the Armed Forces, the Department of State Services, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and the Federal Road Safety Corps, among others, have taken over Eagle Square, venue of the inauguration.

Military personnel, police officers and other security agents deployed for the match past parade continued their dress rehearsals at the venue.

Major roads leading to the Central Area of the Federal Capital Territory were partially cordoned off by security operatives.

The Central Business District began to look like a ghost town due to the presence of heavy security operatives. Several helicopters were also seen hovering over the city for aerial surveillance on Friday and Saturday.

The Eagle Square had been deserted by traders, as the usual business activities on the premises had disappeared, surroundings of the federal secretariat were also quiet, as civil servants were asked to stay off work from Friday until Tuesday.

There was also heavy presence of security men deployed to five star hotels in the Capital Territory.

Personnel for the inauguration were drawn from Special Forces namely, the Police Mobile Force, Counter-Terrorism Unit, Special Protection Unit, Anti-Bomb Squad, FIB-Intelligence Response Team, and the Special Tactical Squad, among others.

Nigerians and others are in high hopes that Tinubu will wave his magic wands and fix the ‘mess’ Nigeria had found itself.

Chief of those requests include an improved economy, intentional fight against corruption, increased and assured security of lives and properties and adequate power supply.

His predecessor Muhammadu Buhari and former Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta tasked Tinubu to work towards uniting Nigerians irrespective of ethnic and political affiliation.

Both leaders gave the charge during the Inauguration Lecture at the International Conference Centre in Abuja

The Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, has told the President-elect not to occupy his mind with the thought of winning the next election, but on how to develop the country and the next generation.

The media space is filed with lots of expectations and magical turnaround of the country’s status by the 16th President.

Tinubu has however identified the pending plans to remove petroleum subsidy and end the multiple foreign currency exchange rates as issues that will pose the initial challenge to the in-coming administration.

While Tinubu would be inaugurated in Abuja, similar exercises would take place in 28 states.

The states are Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Cross River and Delta.

Others are Ebonyi, Enugu, Gombe, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe and Zamfara states.

Brand new governors would be sworn-in in 18 states, where the governors have served out their two terms. The states are Abia, Akwa Ibom, Benue, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Enugu, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba and Zamfara.

Sixteen of the governors to be inaugurated today are of the All Progressives Congress (APC), including Uba Sani (Kaduna), Bassey Otu (Cross River), Mohammed Bago (Niger), Umar Namadi (Jigawa), Ahmed Aliyu (Sokoto), Dikko Radda (Katsina), Hyacinth Alia (Benue), Francis Nwifuru (Ebonyi), Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe), Mai Mala Buni (Yobe), Abdullahi Sule (Nasarawa), Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos), Dapo Abiodun (Ogun), AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq (Kwara), Babagana Zulum (Borno) and Umar Namadi (Jigawa).

Similarly, 10 state governors on the platform of the PDP will take charge today. They are Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Bala Mohammed (Bauchi), Kefas Agbu (Taraba), Caleb Mutfwang (Plateau), Peter Mbah (Enugu), Umo Eno (Akwa Ibom), Dauda Lawal (Zamfara), Siminialayi Fubara (Rivers), Sheriff Oborevwori (Delta) and Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri (Adamawa).

Abba Kabir of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) will be sworn in as governor of Kano State, while Alex Otti of the Labour Party (LP) will be inaugurated as the chief executive of Abia.

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