Robinson Tombari Sibe

The President has spent 94 days (and counting) away from office, and a total of about 145 Days in this calendar year. Here’s what the Public Service Rule says about the duration of Sick Leave:

“The maximum aggregate sick leave which can be allowed an officer, who is not hospitalized, during any period of twelve months shall be forty-two (42) calendar days. Where such an officer has been absent from duty on the ground of ill-health for an aggregate period in excess of forty-two (42) calendar days within twelve calendar months, the officer should be made to appear before a Medical Board with a view to ascertain whether he/she should be invalidated from service.
Sick leave for a period up to three months in the first Sick leave instance may be allowed on the certificate of an approved HealthCare rules. Provider to an officer who is hospitalized. If at the end of that period the officer is still hospitalized, his Permanent Secretary/Head of ExtraMinisterial Office must make an arrangement for him to be examined by a Medical Board with a view to ascertaining whether he should be invalidated from the service or allowed further paid sick leave.” ~ Public Service Rules of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The Public Service Rule listed the officers this rule is applicable to include:

The President;
The Vice President;
Chief Justice of Nigeria;
Justices of the Supreme Court;
President and Justices of the Court of Appeal;
Chief Judge and Judges of the High Court of the Federal
Capital Territory;
Grand Khadi and Khadis of the Sharia Court of Appeal of the Federal Capital Territory;
President and Judges of the Customary Court of Appeal of the Federal Capital Territory;
The Chairmen and Members of the following statutory bodies, namely:
The Code of Conduct Bureau;
The Federal Civil Service Commission;
The Independent National Electoral Commission;
The Federal Character Commission;
The Code of Conduct Tribunal;
The Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission;
The National Population Commission;
The Police Service Commission;
The Auditor-General for the Federation;


The President is the number one Public Servant in this country. He’s been away for over 140 days in a single calendar year. This clearly conflicts with provisions of this Public Service Rule. Although the constitution waas silent on the duration of the President’s sick leave, however, this can serve as a guide. This could shape the action for a Doctrine of Necessity by the Senate. It’s time for the Senate to put together a medical board/team to ascertain the President’s health and capacity to continue as the President or not.


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