Ahmed Lawan, Senate President, has said his support and loyalty to President Muhammadu Buhari does not mean he will go against the constitution to enable him stay in office beyond two terms.
Lawal, who said this in a statement in response to a tweet attributed to him where he purportedly hinted at tenure elongation for Buhari, noted that he cannot undermine the provisions of the constitution.
In the statement released on Tuesday by his media aide, Ola Awoniyi, Lawan stated that he had wanted to ignore the “ignoble mischief”, especially since it is not new, having been posted two years ago, but for the fact that it is now trending on social media.
“The Office of the President of the Senate has noted a tweet by one Cmr Mayor attributing a fabricated statement to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.
“In the mischievous tweet, the Senate President was quoted as saying he ‘won’t mind a constitutional ammendment to allow unlimited term of office for President if President Buhari wishes to remain in office beyond 2023.’
“Our initial reaction was to ignore the ignoble mischief especially since it is not new, having been posted two years ago on 27 March 2019.
“But because the tweet has been trending again on social media, it becomes necessary to issue a formal rebutal of its purport.
“We therefore say categorically that the Senate President has never made any such statement, before or after 2019”, he said.
He also noted that the old tweet, which he said was entirely the handiwork of mischief makers, was being circulated again online by purveyors of fake news
Lawan pointed out that the 1999 Constitution has a firm position on the tenure of the President that reflects the popular stand of Nigerians.
“Section 137(1)b states as follow: A person shall not be qualified for election to the office of President if (b) he has been elected to such Office at any two previous elections.
“The Senate President has never found anything wrong in that provision of the Constitution and has always stood firmly by it”, he also said.
According to the statement, Lawan was among national assembly members who opposed tenure elongation attempt in 2006, and therefore, will not for any reason, go against the wishes of Nigerians.
“It is therefore ludicrous to imagine that Lawan would ever be in the vanguard of any such misadventure that is again certain to fail if ever pursued again.
“The Senate President stands by the well-considered and roundly appreciated provision of the Constitution on the issue and will never subscribe to any move to amend it.
“We, therefore, enjoin members of the public to ignore the old fabricated statement mischieviously attributed to the Senate President and now being circulated by mischief makers,” Awoniyi added.